September #105 : Triple Threat - by Suzy Martin

POZ - Health, Life and HIV
Subscribe to:
POZ magazine
E-newsletters
Join POZ: Facebook MySpace Twitter Pinterest
Tumblr Google+ Flickr MySpace
POZ Personals
Sign In / Join
Username:
Password:

Back to home » Archives » POZ Magazine issues




Table of Contents

Kissing Babies

The Demons Behind the Down Low

Hello Our Name Is ATAC

Putting Out

The DL 411: Resources

Bedtime for Bonzo

Using My Religion

Triple Threat

Earthwatch

Dumped!

Pos & Neg

Planet Bollywood

Doing the HIV Cannes-Cannes

POZ's Bookmobile

How a Drug Becomes a Pill

Briefs

Herbs & Hard-Ons

O Sole Mio!

Quick Study: Diarrhea

The Ideal Combo?

Write On!

Trouble for Tipranavir

HIV Spoken Here

Mouth Wide Shut

Married... with Virus

Mailbox

Lady in Waiting

Publisher's Letter



Most Popular Lessons

The HIV Life Cycle

Shingles

Herpes Simplex Virus

Syphilis & Neurosyphilis

Treatments for Opportunistic Infections (OIs)

What is AIDS & HIV?

Hepatitis & HIV


email print

September 2004

Triple Threat

by Suzy Martin

Pharma comes together over Africa - and challenges cheaper generics

For more and more Africans, HIV treatment may soon be as easy as popping two pills a day—but stateside HIVers may be late to the party. As the first $350 million of President Bush’s $15 billion Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) reached African HIVers, U.S. global AIDS czar Randall Tobias announced May 16 that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) would begin reviewing first-line, three-in-one capsules—previously available only as India-made generics—to encourage drug companies to make simpler meds for HIV-ravaged countries. Compared to domestic $15K first-line regimens, India’s all-in-one combos are cheap ($140 a year) and simple (two pills daily). The meds treat thousands of PWAs worldwide, but the U.S. had refused to buy them for PEPFAR since their brand-name counterparts are still under patent here.

The day after Tobias’ announcement, however, big pharma got with the program. Gilead, Merck and Bristol-Myers Squibb announced the first-ever multi-company partnership to make triple combos of patented meds—a feat activists have pursued for years—for overseas use only. Tom Flavin, PEPFAR’s public-affairs officer, told POZ, “We’ll buy the best drugs available at the cheapest price,” though the best has yet to be determined.

Tobias said the FDA will test the three-in-one generics, along with newer brand-name combos, despite the preexisting World Health Organization (WHO) review process. Critics say the second approval requirement needlessly impedes generics—though at press time, the WHO had temporarily withdrawn approval of two India-made HIV generics after routine lab inspections uncovered faulty paperwork records. The FDA’s Debra Birnkrant, MD, says, “The WHO’s approach is laudable. But [the U.S.’s] FDA should take the lead.”

Will PEPFAR’s combo mambo finally propel all-in-one pills, generic or otherwise, onto U.S. shelves? Health Global Access Project’s Jennifer Cohn, a treatment advocate and MD, believes that for now, the feds will push for neither—to protect pharma’s domestic market. “The feds fear an awareness that quality, cheap generics are out there,” she says, “and that Americans who can’t get them [and must pay more for name brands] are going to be pissed.” Meanwhile, here’s to Africa.




[Go to top]

Join POZ Facebook Twitter Google+ MySpace YouTube Tumblr Flickr
Quick Links
Current Issue

HIV 101
HIV Testing
Safer Sex
Find a Date
Newly Diagnosed
Disclosing Your Status
Starting Treatment
Search for the Cure
POZ Stories
POZ TV
Read the Blogs
Visit the Forums
Women
African American
Latino
Providers
Job Listings
Events Calendar


    aqua_31206
    Macon
    Georgia


    Poz_Qt
    Columbus
    Ohio


    TaintedloveDC
    Washington
    DC


    humboman
    Baltimore
    Maryland
Click here to join POZ Personals!
Ask POZ Pharmacist

Talk to Us
Poll
Do you enjoy books with HIV-positive characters?
Yes
No

Survey
Mind Matters

more surveys
Contact Us
We welcome your comments!
[ about Smart + Strong | about POZ | POZ advisory board | partner links | advertising policy | advertise/contact us | site map]
© 2014 Smart + Strong. All Rights Reserved. Terms of use and Your privacy.
Smart + Strong® is a registered trademark of CDM Publishing, LLC.