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E-DRUG: Mandatory generic prescribing vs trade mark rights

Dear colleagues,

Here's an interesting situation on which I would appreciate comment.

A country decides to introduce mandatory generic prescribing in both 
the public and private health care sectors.  A multinational company 
goes to court on grounds that this is a violation of trade mark 
rights, that an innovator would have invested so much in researching 
and developing a product that they have the right to insist that it 
be left to the doctor (the prescriber) to choose which trade mark 
they want prescribed.

I have an opinion on this, but could someone tell me if they have a 
case here?  What is the experience elsewhere?  Which other country 
practises mandatory generic prescribing?

Comment would be appreciated.

Bada Pharasi
Department of Health
Pretoria, South Africa 

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