Russia Could Begin Producing Generic Versions of Antiretroviral Drugs by 2007, Group Says
Russia could begin manufacturing generic versions of patented antiretroviral drugs as early as 2007, the national health advocacy group Federal Service for the Oversight of Public Health and Social Affairs told the government on Thursday, Russia's RIA Novosti reports. "I think we will begin producing the basic range of [HIV/AIDS-related] drugs here, in Russia, as early as 2007," Ramil Khabriyev, the group's director, said in the Rossiiskaya Gazeta. He also said Russian health officials are brokering a deal to partner with several western pharmaceutical companies to produce the generic drugs. "A whole number of (foreign) producers have already begun to inspect our pharmaceutical factories with a view to launching licensed production," Khabriyev said, adding that Russian manufacturing would reduce the cost of antiretrovirals for HIV-positive people in the country (RIA Novosti, 5/4). Although official figures place the number of HIV-positive Russians at more than 342,000, some "experts think it is much higher," Russian President Vladimir Putin said last month (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 4/25).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.