E-drug: Access to Essential Drugs in Poor Countries - A Lost Battle?
Thought this article may be of interest - am not quite sure how to
get the whole thing electronically, only the abstract is currently on
the web site:
Abstracts - January 27, 1999
Access to Essential Drugs in Poor Countries - A Lost Battle?
Bernard Pecoul, MD, MPH
Pierre Chirac, PharmD
Patrice Trouiller, PharmD
Jacques Pinel, PharmD
Drugs offer a simple, cost-effective solution to many health problems,
provided they are available, affordable, and properly used. However,
effective treatment is lacking in poor countries for many diseases,
including African trypanosomiasis, Shigella dysentery, leishmaniasis,
tuberculosis, and bacterial meningitis. Treatment may be precluded
because no effective drug exists, it is too expensive, or it has been
withdrawn from the market. Moreover, research and development in
tropical diseases have come to a near standstill. This article focuses
on the problems of access to quality drugs for the treatment of diseases
that predominantly affect the developing world: (1) poor-quality and
counterfeit drugs; (2) lack of availability of essential drugs due to
fluctuating production or prohibitive cost; (3) need to develop
field-based drug research to determine optimum utilization and
remotivate research and development for new drugs for the developing
world; and (4) potential consequences of recent World Trade Organization
agreements on the availability of old and new drugs. These problems are
not independent and unrelated but are a result of the fundamental nature
of the pharmaceutical market and the way it is regulated.
* there are also some articles on drug advertising to consumers in this
issue of JAMA
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