As the price of new medicines weighs on health payers in Europe, universities are seeking a greater stake in how their research is used and trying to attach conditions on the use of intellectual property to ensure access and affordability of the final product. But getting this done, universities and other advocates are learning, isn’t easy.
At the forefront of this movement are groups such as Universities Allied for Essential Medicines, which for years has been urging universities to include terms and conditions on access and affordability into their research agreements with pharmaceutical companies.
They’ve achieved some success in getting universities, especially in the United Kingdom and Germany, to introduce socially responsible licensing policies for discoveries destined for low-income countries. But as the movement expands to tackle access to medicine concerns in Europe, the hurdles are even greater.
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