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Big Pharma’s new deals

Posted by Richard D North in Big Pharma / Money on 11 April 2008

Why we posted this: It’s important to understand the new relationships Big (bad old) Pharma is forging with governments and charities to provide medicines at low prices.

The original story:
Vaccines deal to benefit poor countries

By Andrew Jack
2 April, 2008

The story in brief:
The FT reported that:

six donors are close to approving a groundbreaking $1.5bn (€960m, £756m) mechanism designed to boost the development and affordable supply of new vaccines to the developing world. The governments of Italy, the UK, Canada, Russia and Norway, as well as the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, will by June agree their support for final recommendations released on Thursday on a pilot Advance Market Commitment (AMC) to supply vaccines against pneumococcal disease, which kills 1.6m people a year [...]

GlaxoSmithKline and Wyeth are among the companies most likely to benefit from the first AMC. Each has developed pneumococcal vaccines sold in richer countries but are investing in alternative versions more effective in Latin America, Africa and Asia, where the strains are different.

The vaccine must initially be offered at a price of $5-$7 a dose, and companies must pledge to continue supplying significant quantities, with a maximum “tail price” in later years of about $2.

livingissues comment:
For many years, Big Pharma has been much-criticised for getting rich selling expensive products. This site has posted a rather different way of looking at things.

This news story points the way to the kind of compromises and diplomcay – especially between Big Pharma, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and governments (in both the rich and “poor” worlds).

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