Let’s Start with Who (not WHO) offers Access to Medicines



Starting with access to medicine — it is a big problem not just in the U.S.  And managing it often ends up with a number of groups — governments, NGOs, academia, pharmaceutical companies, finance institutions and multilateral organizations (e.g., WHO).  It’s not easy.  But let’s take a look at pharma because there is a report — the Access to Medicines Index — which reviews the 20 largest research-based pharmaceutical companies on how they make medicines, vaccines and diagnostics more accessible in low- and middle-income countries.  Here’s the overall listing for 2016, but before interpreting, it’s important to know what it means. Originally created by a Dutch national to provide transparency and to recognize the programs pharmaceutical companies do, the Index was launched in 2008.  So here is what the Index measures via a weighted analytical framework.  Here’s the key point — there is a lot to providing access beyond “giving it away”.




Okay — what do all these things mean?

Research & Development (R&D).  The top 20 pharmaceutical companies are developing 420 products for the 51 most burdensome diseases and conditions in low- and middle-income countries.  Think about that — 420 products for 51 disease and conditions.