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[afro-nets] Drug company hints at reducing price of HIV drug

  • From: Claudio Schuftan <claudio@hcmc.netnam.vn>
  • Date: Sat, 10 Feb 2007 10:37:11 +0700

Drug company hints at reducing price of HIV drug Kaletra

Kaletra is a very potent antiretroviral drug, a boosted Protease
Inhibitor (Lopinavir/ritonavir) important in 2nd line therapy
for the increasing number of people worldwide who are failing
first line regimens so we should follow what will happen.

Kaletra is sold at a price of about $500/patient/year in
countries in sub-Saharan Africa but at a much higher price
outside sub-Saharan Africa, for ex in Asian countries such as
Thailand - or Vietnam - that are not on the list of least
developed countries.

As a reminder, the Brazilian government has also negotiated with
Abbott to bring down the price of KAletra ( with success at the
end of 2005) and to obtain the heat-stable formulation of
Kaletra (Aluvia) at a discounted price.

Drug company hints at reducing price of HIV drug

Abbott Laboratories, which is affected by the recently announced
compulsory licensing has agreed, in principle, to find ways to
bring down the price of its HIV drug Kaletra.

The pharmaceutical giant held the first round of negotiations
with the Public Health Ministry's team Thursday, following the
ministry's announcement to enforce the compulsory licensing for
the lifesaving drug along with another drug for the treatment of
heart disease.

Abbott agreed to go back and find ways to reduce the price of
Kaletra, whereas the ministry promised to find out the exact
amount supplies it needed, Dr Thawat Suntrajarn, who led
ministry's negotiation team said.

No final agreement was reached at the talks, Thawat said, adding
there was plenty of time for further negotiations on the matter.
Stocks of Kaletra were sufficient for at least four to six
months, meaning the ministry had enough time to reach a
satisfactory price, said Thawat.