Kenyan Government Lacks Money for Antiretrovirals Even After Passage of Drug Importation Bill
The Kenyan government announced yesterday that it does not have enough money to purchase antiretroviral drugs, even though the Kenyan Parliament recently passed legislation allowing the nation to import and manufacture cheaper generic drugs, East African Standard/BBC Monitoring reports (East African Standard/BBC Monitoring, 9/13). The Kenyan Parliament in June passed the Industrial Properties Bill 2001, which allows Kenya to "suspend drug patent rights" in a national health emergency to import into or produce within the country less expensive generic medicines. The bill stipulates that Kenya give drug makers six months' notice before licensing other companies to import or produce generic versions of patented drugs (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 6/13). Dr. Richard Muga, director of the Kenyan Department of Medical Services, said that the government hopes to receive money for AIDS drugs from the U.N. Global AIDS and Health Fund. The East African Standard/BBC Monitoring reports that the government's statements yesterday "dealt a big blow to people living with AIDS who had hoped that the passing of the bill would make drugs more accessible" (East African Standard/BBC Monitoring, 9/13).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.