March 11 marked the beginning of the third year of COVID-19 pandemic. Global response has been a colossal failure as evidenced by the vast inequities prevailing in access to vaccines, diagnostics and therapeutics, worsening the effects of COVID-19 in the developing world. Meanwhile Big Pharma enjoys big profits enabled by intellectual property monopolies. The TRIPS Waiver proposal, co-sponsored by 65 countries and supported globally, aims to scale-up and diversify production to ensure equitable access. However, due to the continued opposition of certain developed countries and in particular the European Union, the WTO has yet to deliver a meaningful outcome on the proposal.
The Panel Discussion was organised by PHM, Health Gap, International Treatment Preparedness Coalition and Our World is Not For Sale on March 11, 2022 at 12.30 p.m. GMT. The discussion featured civil society leaders experienced in the politics and dynamics of intellectual property and access to medicines, and provided their perspectives on the current state of play with respect to the TRIPS Waiver and the implications for access.
Prof. Brook Baker, Health Gap
Lori Wallach, Rethink Trade
Leena Menghaney, MSF Access campaign
Felipe de Carvalho, Brazilian Interdisciplinary Aids Association (ABIA)
Othman Mellouk, International Treatment Preparedness Coalition (ITPC)
Sangeeta Shashikant, Third World Network