Clinton Announces Deal for Low-Cost Second-Line Antiretroviral Drugs, HIV Tests
Former President Clinton on Thursday announced an agreement reached by the Clinton Foundation that will allow the sale of antiretroviral drugs efavirenz and abacavir, as well as HIV tests, at a lower cost in developing countries (Wilson, "All Things Considered," NPR, 1/12). This is the first time the foundation has reduced prices for second-line AIDS drugs, antiretrovirals taken by patients who have developed resistance to first-line treatments. Under the deal, the drug efavirenz will be produced by Indian companies Cipla, Ranbaxy Laboratories and Strides Arcolab, as well as South Africa's Aspen Pharmacare, for no more than $240 per patient annually. Cipla also will produce the drug abacavir for $447 per patient annually. These prices reduce by 30% or more the cost of medications that are already offered at reduced prices. In addition, rapid HIV tests will be produced for between 49 cents and 65 cents per test by Chembio Diagnostics, Orgenics, Qualpro Diagnostics and Shanghai Kehua Bio-Engineering. The foundation negotiated the terms by helping to obtain the drugs' ingredients at a lower cost. More than 240,000 people in the developing world, including Africa and the Caribbean, receive medications through the foundation's agreements (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 1/12). "Too many people die because they can't afford or don't have access to the drugs," Clinton said, adding, "Too many people are being infected because most of the people who have the virus today have not been tested" (Matthews, AP/Forbes.com, 1/12).
- NPR's "All Things Considered" segment includes comments from Clinton ("All Things Considered," NPR, 1/12). The complete segment is available online in RealPlayer.
- ABCNews' "Nightline" on Thursday included an interview with Clinton about the agreement (Moran, "Nightline," ABCNews, 1/12). The complete segment is available online in RealPlayer.
- NPR's "Morning Edition" on Friday also included an interview with Clinton about the deal (Inskeep, "Morning Edition," NPR, 1/13). The complete segment is available online in RealPlayer.