Eliminating IP barriers to treatment in Malaysia

Eliminating IP barriers to treatment in Malaysia

Project

As the only registered organization in Malaysia consisting of PLHIV, Positive Malaysian Treatment Access & Advocacy Group (MTAAG+) advocates for affordable medicines for all in need of those drugs. To sustain and increase the number of people living with HIV on treatment, stricter criteria for granting patents and a better use of compulsory licenses are needed in Malaysia. In this project MTAAG+ will focus on training, community mobilization and advocacy on TRIPS flexibilities and harmful intellectual property provisions in trade agreements. As a country with a small population but several generic manufacturers that can meet international standards, the long term goal for MTAAG+ and other partners is to have Malaysia as a potential exporter of generic medicines.

Project details

Time frame
30 December 2014 - 30 December 2018
Budget
€ 118,670
Active in
Malaysia

Objectives

Main outcomes:
# Documentation, research and analysis of existing Malaysian patent law conducted to provide inputs for the national patent law review and to prevent intellectual property provisions in trade agreements that reduce TRIPS flexibilities for public health.
# Patent status for essential medicines documented and dossiers prepared as the basis for patent challenges and review
# Increased capacity of the PLHIV community regarding TRIPS flexibilities for public health.

Background

As of December 2013, there were 100,000 PLHIV in Malaysia. The number receiving anto-retroviral therapy (ART) rose to approximately 14,784 people, which is 45% of treatment coverage. The MoH estimates that it currently costs between US $4 million and US $7 million to provide ART per year. The MoH does provide second-line ART free of charge at some government hospitals. However, not all of those facilities have proved willing and able to participate in this initiative. Some, for instance, have yet to enroll enough patients to meet their target. Currently, the Malaysian government is having an intensive negotiation in U.S-led Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) and E.U-Malaysia FTA which will undermine access to affordable medicine.

In 2003, Malaysia was the first country in the post-Doha period to issue a 2-year compulsory license ('government use' order) to a local importer to import three first line ARVs from India.

Goals

Everyone living with HIV worldwide receives treatment
100%
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