Pharmaceutical Accountability Foundation

Solutions for better access to medicines

Pharmaceutical company abuse of their market position to garner ever higher profits at the expense of public health should not be allowed. Fortunately there are several steps that governments and health advocates can take to stop the sacrifice of patients’ needs in the name of maximising corporate paydays. We inform you about the solutions for better access to medicines.

Seeking innovation and access

A better system for innovation on and access to health technologies is possible. Where innovation is driven by public health priorities rather than profit potential. Where there are limitations on abuse of market exclusivity to stifle competition and keep prices high. And where a public-health focussed enabling environment facilitates both new research and access to its fruits. On this page we have collected a number of possible solutions to the challenges laid out on our issues page. Ideas for these solutions have been compiled from government and parliamentary reports, industry and professionals’ organisations, NGOs and think tanks. If you see a solution missing, please let us know; we will be happy to add it here. Promising ideas are outlined below, divided loosely into three broad categories.

Click here for an overview of all solutions.

Better Innovation Models

Innovation models that “delink” the cost of research and development from the eventual price of a medical product offer the potential to separate incentives for research and development from profit and to allow for a more public-health focused agenda.

Improved Access

There are several ways to bring down high prices or limit monopolies that hinder access to medicines. Strategies can include encouraging competition, capping medicine prices, or taking solidarity action on rare or hard-to-treat diseases, among others.

Strong Enabling Environment

Governments and intergovernmental bodies have the power to set better legislation or to better enforce existing legislation in order to optimise innovation and access to meet pressing public health needs. Public awareness can also play a key role.

Better Innovation Models

Innovation need not always be incentivised by potential profit. Alternative innovation models have been proposed that would take further the idea that medical research should serve primarily health needs.

Click here for an overview of these solutions

Improved Access

There are several ways to bring down prices and improve access to medicines. Strategies can include encouraging competition by breaking the hold of a monopoly, limiting the capacity of a monopoly holder to set sky-high prices through control or reference mechanisms, or taking solidarity action on rare or hard-to-treat diseases.

When high prices are due to issues outside of monopolies, there are other actions that can be taken by both governments and medicines developers to improve access.

Regulatory challenges are often quite specific to the medicine or the malady in question. But some individual solutions are worth exploring as ways to overcome these issues.

Click here for an overview of these solutions

Strong Enabling Environment

Innovation need not always be incentivised by potential profit. Alternative innovation models have been proposed that would take further the idea that medical research should serve primarily health needs.

Governments and intergovernmental bodies have the power to improve the way legislation is created and implemented to better facilitate innovation and access to medicines.

Click here for an overview of these solutions

Get involved!

From making a donation to our foundation to becoming one of our invaluable volunteers, there are several ways you can get involved with our work and make a difference. Find out more? Please contact us.