G8 Plan Would Subsidize Purchase of Vaccines Developed for Diseases Largely Affecting Developing World, Including HIV
Finance ministers from the Group of Eight industrialized nations over the weekend at a meeting in Moscow discussed an "advance market commitment plan" aimed at promoting the development of vaccines for diseases -- including tuberculosis, malaria, HIV/AIDS and human papillomavirus -- that largely affect developing countries, London's Times reports (Rozenberg, Times, 2/13). Finance ministers at their April meeting in Washington, D.C., are expected to approve the plan, under which G8 nations would provide between $800 million and $6 billion to subsidize the purchase of new vaccines, according to the Wall Street Journal. Under the plan, wealthy nations would provide funding to pharmaceutical companies when they produce safe and effective vaccines, and drug makers would sell the vaccines at reduced prices in developing countries when G8 nations have provided the promised amount. The total amount of the G8 pledge and the price per dose of each vaccine would be negotiated ahead of time. Donor nations would aim for an amount that would ensure drug companies become involved with the plan, but not generate a major return. G8 officials are working with advisers from the World Bank and other groups to finalize some of the plan's details, including which of six diseases -- HIV/AIDS, malaria, TB, pneumococcus, rotavirus or HPV -- should receive the initial focus. Negotiators also are finalizing how much each donor would contribute to the plan. Some G8 countries might favor focusing on a disease for which a promising vaccine already is under development but might not be widely manufactured without the advance purchase commitment, the Journal reports. However, other nations might want to focus on diseases, such as HIV/AIDS and malaria, for which promising vaccines might not be available for 10 to 15 years, according to the Journal. It is uncertain if the plan will be supported by pharmaceutical companies (Phillips, Wall Street Journal, 2/13).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.