AIDS Healthcare Foundation Praises Thailand For Bold Move To Increase AIDS Drug Access

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HIV/AIDSAIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF), the US' largest provider of HIV/AIDS healthcare, education and prevention and operator of free AIDS treatment clinics in the US, Africa, Latin America/Caribbean and Asia, today joined scores of other global AIDS advocates in praising Thailand's Ministry of Health announcing its intention to issue a compulsory license for the lifesaving HIV/AIDS drug Efavirenz, made by Merck. World Trade Organization regulations include flexibilities, which allow governments to issue compulsory licenses without consulting the foreign patent owner.

"We applaud Thailand's Ministry of Health for courageously issuing this compulsory license to make an affordable version of the AIDS drug Efavirenz," said Michael Weinstein, President of AIDS Healthcare Foundation. "With this one move, Thailand has placed the health of its citizens ahead of drug company profits and now stands with Brazil and Malaysia as a model for countries around the world whose people are in need of lifesaving AIDS medicines. We call on governments in countries where people continue to lack access to urgently-needed AIDS drugs to follow Thailand's lead and pursue all tactics necessary to provide their citizens with lifesaving medicines."

source - Phama Lexicon