Policies Must Ensure Access To Essential Medicines

The Lancet: Essential medicines are still essential
Andy L. Gray, Veronika J. Wirtz, Ellen F. M ‘t Hoen, Michael R. Reich, and Hans V. Hogerzeilemail, all members of the Lancet Commission on Essential Medicines Policies

“On October 21, WHO published the full report of the 20th Expert Committee on the Selection and Use of Essential Medicines, with its new WHO Model List of Essential Medicines (EML). … However, … [t]he EML is only a first step in the policy process towards assuring access to these medicines, as part of broader global health and sustainable development goals. Comprehensive essential medicine policies are still needed, covering many different aspects, such as appropriate research and development, financing mechanisms, generic policies including various measures to overcome patent barriers, quality assurance, supply systems, and safe and cost-effective use. The 2016 report of the Lancet Commission on Essential Medicines Policies will show how such policies remain essential and will recommend ways of implementing them through concrete actions at the national and global levels” (10/24).