Patent Environment To Complicate Further
BMI View : While generic competition has resulted in falling prices for antiretrovirals, developing countries continue to be challenged by patents that threaten to overwhelm their ability to purchase the newer and more costly antiretrovirals. As countries look to find ways to gain access to affordable medicines, multinational drugmakers may be faced with governments in emerging markets increasingly using TRIPS flexibilities, including pre-grant patent examination, third party oppositions and compulsory licences. This would further complicate the patent environment outside the developed states and hinder company return on research and development investment.
Highlighting the positive effects of generic competition on the prices of therapeutics for the treatment of HIV, according to a report published by the Medecins Sans Frontiers (MSF), the price of first- and second-line antiretrovirals (ARVs) to treat HIV are falling because of increased competition among generic producers.
The 'best possible' price of the World Health Organization (WHO) recommended one-pill-a-day first-line combination (TDF/3TC/EFV) of has fallen 68% in the last seven years (from USD426 to USD136 per person per year (ppy)), with some countries able to achieve even lower prices in large volume orders.
As new generic competitors have emerged, the prices of a key medicine (atazanavir/ritonavir) used in second-line treatment fell by 9.3% over the last year, with the most affordable second-line combination now priced at USD243 per year.
Still Too Pricy
|Generic Competition = Falling Prices|
|The Evolution In Price Of Different First-Line ARV Regimens (USD per patient per year)|