178592 Compulsory Licensing: Effecting access to medicines in the developing world?

Wednesday, October 29, 2008: 11:24 AM

Meghana Aruru, PhD (cand) , College of Pharmacy / Pharmacy Administration, University of IIlinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Jack Warren Salmon, PhD , Health Policy and Administration, University Of Illinois-Chicago, Chicago, IL
Compulsory licensing is a means of validly circumventing patents to provide affordable medications. Under the DOHA round of the Trade Related Intellectual and Property Rights (TRIPS) agreement of the World Trade Organization (WTO), compulsory licensing is legal and admissible under certain conditions (Article 31). However, compulsory licensing appears as only an interim solution passed by WTO members to address access to medications for the developing world. It is by no means a “solution” to the ongoing critical drug access issues, and while it exists, only three countries have taken advantage of it. This paper will to explore some of the underlying aspects of compulsory licensing, the reluctance by developing countries to invoke compulsory licensing, and some of its implications. Our intent is to provoke thought on further actions that may be pursued for critical public health.

Learning Objectives:
1. To delineate and explain compulsory licensing in the context of patent protections in the pharmaceutical sector 2. To differentiate between the three legally permissible modes of breaking patents under world trade laws 3. To describe the pros and cons of compulsory licensing 4. To explore the consequences or repercussions (if any) of invoking compulsory licensing, specifically by the Kingdom of Thailand and the few other nations

Keywords: Drugs, Access

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: No conflicts of interests to declare. Studying pharmaceutical industry adn have researched India and other nations' health care.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.