Dear Dr. Dybul, Dr. Chan, and Executive Directors of Proposed Convening Partners (UNITAID, UNICEF, World Bank, UNDP and GAVI):
Attached is a letter from 220 non-governmental organizations from around the globe opposing the proposed Blue-Ribbon Task Force to Develop a Global Framework on Tiered-Pricing. The letter address a third-draft concept note on this initiative dated March 18, 2014. In this letter, we urge the Global Fund and proposed partners to:
a) Abandon the blue-ribbon Task Force and tiered pricing initiative in light of the evidence of the ineffectiveness of tiered pricing and the broad concerns voiced by public health experts, civil society, and increasingly, governments.
b) Join ongoing government-driven efforts at the global, national and regional level, including the implementation of the WHO Global Strategy and Plan of Action on Public Health, Innovation and Intellectual Property. Instead of creating parallel processes, the Global Fund should use its resources – institutional, political and technical – to play a positive role to improve affordability of medical tools. For example, the Global Fund should lend its full weight to assist all developing countries, including those countries that no longer receive financial support from Global Fund, to improve affordability of medicines, including through the use of TRIPS flexibilities and other measures that promote robust generic competition.
c) Raise the challenges of access to medicines and other medical technologies for low and middle-income countries at the upcoming May 2014 World Health Assembly, by sharing pricing information from Global Fund recipients and the difficulties the Global Fund faces in bringing the cost of medicines down and supporting civil society’s demand to further expand access to treatment through all proven interventions for all in need.
We look forward to your responses and to discussing this further with you.