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As the Supreme Court's decision concluded, "the Promise Doctrine is incongruent with both the words and the scheme of the Patent Act."
Many believe pharmaceutical companies are repugnant. There were several serious issues that built the foundation of the anti-pharma movement. While not all companies are guilty or equally responsible, many behaved unethically. They didn't always fully disclose research and safety data if it didn't support their product. They attempted to prevent researchers from voicing serious concerns. They created inappropriate relationships with physicians, leaving the impression that doctors were being bought, and sometimes that was true. This had to change.
Biologics are large molecule medicines that are so intricate that manufacturers develop them using unique, biological processes. But as patents expire for established biologic drugs, newer treatments are now entering the Canadian marketplace called Subsequent Entry Biologics. SEBs are similar, but not the same as biologics.
The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement is being negotiated in secret, but leaked documents from the negotiations have revealed that the United States is pushing hard for strict intellectual property rules that would protect the profits of pharmaceutical companies at the expense of patients. These rules would extend patent monopolies and delay the introduction of cheaper generic drugs, allowing the big brand-name drug companies to maintain their high prices for longer periods of time. This would put lifesaving medicines out of reach for millions of poor people around the world. It could also lead to higher drug prices here at home.
Should the government be allowed to force pharmaceutical companies to continue manufacturing drugs that are no longer profitable, if these drugs are in the public best interest? I'm really struggling with this one.
Marc-André Gagnon, assistant professor at Carleton University. Gagnon, a long-time critic of the pharmaceutical industry, is concerned that overall drug expenditures are higher in Canada than in other developed countries. Gagnon's analysis is flawed in several respects.
There is an ongoing campaign to convince health care providers, decision-makers and the public that generic medications cannot be trusted and that if you want the real goods you need to pay the brand name price. The line is actually a twist, a re-packaging of some complicated statistics into an easy-to-understand sound bite, but one with the unfortunate weakness of not being true.