IFPMA and IGBA Unite on Commitment to Equitable Access to COVID-19 Medicines and Vaccines
On the occasion of the World Health Assembly, the world’s research-based and generic & biosimilar pharmaceutical industry bodies delivered a statement declaring their shared commitment to equitable access to COVID-19 medicines and vaccines. In their joint statement, the two global pharmaceutical industry bodies acknowledge their responsibility and commitment to support the international response to the pandemic with their unique scientific, technical and manufacturing expertise to meet the increased demand for medicines; and to the discovery and development of affordable therapeutics and vaccines for COVID-19. However, for the pharmaceutical industry to do so fully, it requires others to play their part.
The two pharmaceutical industry bodies list eight areas of shared concern that require international solidarity, cooperation, coordination and support. The areas covered involve trade, disease surveillance and demand forecasting, regulatory alignment, partnership, support for balanced intellectual property; and for multilateral organizations and country leaders to align on allocation principles to ensure fair and equitable access to COVID-19 treatments and vaccines.
- Ensure trade barriers, including export restrictions, are lifted and unethical business conduct is eliminated, as they impact our ability to receive materials, including critical raw ingredients, APIs and medical devices for our own supply chains, and impede our ability to distribute our critically-needed finished products;
- Ensure continued disease surveillance and open and rapid sharing of information;
- Facilitate rapid development of robust forecasting models and clear, coordinated demand planning to inform decisions on clinical development, scale-up, and right-sizing of manufacturing assets for diagnostics, therapeutics and vaccines;
- Establish, in collaboration with cross-sector initiatives such as ACT-A, risk-sharing models, including funding for manufacturing investments and advance purchase agreements, that recognize the uncertainty of the pandemic as the actual demand, geography, and epidemiology of the disease evolves over time;
- Encourage national regulatory agency alignment and collaboration across borders through good reliance practices that improve and expedite access to therapeutics and vaccines, whilst ensuring product quality, efficacy and safety and international manufacturing standards;
- Create opportunities for partnership between the private and public sectors across the spectrum of health issues that are critical to address the pandemic.
- Support an effective and balanced intellectual property framework, a key factor to enable R&D, accelerate manufacturing scale-up, and facilitate licensing for therapeutics and vaccines;
- Ensure equitable access for COVID -19 therapeutics and vaccines at global and national levels by supporting multilateral organizations and country leaders to align on allocation principles in line with WHO agreed principles.