Health and Access to Quality Medicines July 2010

Access to essential medicines far from being achieved

Access to essential medicines, especially for the poor has not yet become a reality. There are more than 20,000 pharmaceutical products registered in the market - but why do we say that people, especially the poor, cannot access the medicines they need?

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India Expands Role as Drug Producer


India’s drug industry is on track to grow about 13 percent this year, to just over $24 billion.Business is so brisk that Sun, with revenue of 41 billion rupees ($880 million) last year, predicts sales will grow 20 percent this year and is expanding its Halol factory.

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African Union (AU) meets to find solutions to maternal and child deaths

President Korom - African Union  

This year’s African Union summit, to be held in Kampala will take maternal and child health as its theme. While target four and five of the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) aim at reducing by two-thirds the number of mothers and children who die every year during child birth and childhood illness, many countries are nowhere near meeting that target. African women still die in great numbers while giving birth.

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Anti-Counterfeit Deal Threatens Accessibility of Drugs


A proposed anti-counterfeit trade deal (ACTA) between 10 countries and the European Union (EU) could create a new set of barriers to the export of generic medicines to low income countries. ACTA is aimed at tackling the trade in fake and those infringing on intellectual property (IP) rights by strengthening powers of customs officials in signatory countries to seize counterfeit goods.

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Most paediatric fevers not caused by malaria

Mother with sick child  

More than half the paediatric fevers treated in public health clinics in Africa are caused by diseases other than malaria, according to a study by Oxford University and other research groups, whose authors caution against the "continued indiscriminate use of anti-malarials for all fevers across Africa." 
Of the 183 million children with malaria symptoms treated by public health clinics in 2007, only 43 percent were diagnosed with malaria, but many more most likely received anti-malarial medication.

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