WHO Debates Plan To Fight Antibiotic Resistance

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World Health Organization members this week are debating a plan to address the global problem of increasing resistance to existing antibiotics and the lack of new treatments to replace them. Today, discussions on antimicrobial resistance went to informals to try to resolve outstanding issues.

Two UN Agencies Come Out In Support Of Extension Of TRIPS LDC Waiver

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The United Nations Development Programme and the Joint UN Programme on HIV/AIDS have issued a joint statement supporting a request by least-developed countries to extend a waiver allowing them to abstain from enforcing patents on pharmaceutical products.

Five Challenges Filed Against Gilead Patent Claims For Hepatitis C Drug

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Pharmaceutical company Gilead Sciences has been noted first for developing a treatment for hepatitis C, which afflicts tens of millions around the world, and then for pricing it at jaw-dropping prices ($1000 per pill) in the United States and elsewhere. Now a group of health advocates has challenged Gilead’s patent applications in five emerging economies.

Statement: Blumenthal Offers Amendment On Trade Transparency

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Senators Blumenthal, Brown, Baldwin, and Udall introduced today a trade negotiation transparency bill that would require that all formal U.S. proposals for trade agreement restrictions on domestic regulations be posted on a website. This is a common sense policy that should be broadly supported. The bill would require policies similar to the transparency policies currently followed by the European Union and by intergovernmental organizations that set similar minimum regulatory standards. But it would be a major change in the current process for trade negotiations followed by the U.S. Trade Representative, which are infamously secretive, write Sean Flynn and David Levine.

WHA68: Global Vaccine Plan Lagging; New Proposal To Lower Prices

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An assessment of the World Health Organization Global Vaccine Action Plan aimed at delivering vaccination to all and boosting research into new vaccines found implementation to be “far off-track” in some areas. Today at the World Health Assembly, Libya put forward a new proposal at the Assembly to reduce vaccine prices and increase availability in developing countries.

World Health Assembly Opens: Time Of Change At WHO; G-7 Involved

German Chancellor Angela Merkel speaks at WHA 68

“The Ebola outbreak shook this organization to its core,” World Health Organization Director General Margaret Chan said in opening the WHO’s annual assembly today. And the need to better construct the world’s emergency response systems has the biggest economies on the podium, with German Chancellor Angela Merkel speaking as chair of the Group of 7.

WHO Leads Effort To Build R&D Roadmap For Future Epidemics

Panel Chair Barbara Stocking, photo credit John Zaracostas

The World Health Organization is working to learn from the fast response on research and development for Ebola that led to effective treatments in a short time. It hopes that this changes the way R&D for emergency vaccines is done forever.

Polish Government Drafts IP Law Reform

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WARSAW — More than twenty years after Poland’s parliament passed the Authors’ and Related Rights law of 1994, the Polish government is drafting three bills to modify the country’s intellectual property legislation. The first of the drafts prepared by the Polish Ministry of Culture and National heritage was submitted to the Parliament in March, and is currently being deliberated, while the ministry is finishing work on the remaining two drafts.

In ‘Huge’ Move, WHO Adds Key Hepatitis C, Cancer, TB Drugs To Essential Medicines List

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The World Health Organization today published its updated Model List of Essential Medicines, including high-priced new treatments for hepatitis C, cancers and multi-drug resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) that were quickly applauded by the public health advocacy community.

EU Trade Commissioner New Paper On Investor-State Disputes In TTIP

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EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström published a concept paper on investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) mechanisms to be included in the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP).