LMICs Can Use Threat Of Compulsory Licenses To Increase Access To Medicines, LSHTM Professors Say

The BMJ: Threat of compulsory licenses could increase access to essential medicines
In this analysis, Gorik Ooms, professor of global health law and governance, and Johanna Hanefeld, associate professor of health policy and systems, both with the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, “argue that low- and middle-income countries could increase access to medicines by forming an alliance to credibly threaten companies with compulsory licenses.” The authors conclude, “[T]he governments of low- and middle-income countries with manufacturing capacity are not as powerless as before the Doha declaration. They can issue compulsory licenses for all medicines needed to protect public health without violating the TRIPS agreement. They can declare their intention to help low- and middle-income countries without manufacturing capacity and, by doing so, empower these other countries. Whether they have the will to confront the likely political pressure is a different matter” (5/28).