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Let's Help Johnson & Johnson Do the Right Thing!

16. December 2011

    Johnson & Johnson is expected to decide next week whether it will enter into formal negotiations with the Medicines Patent Pool (MPP) Foundation for the licensing of their HIV drugs. In order to upscale access to HIV treatment, it is essential that they do so.

    J&J has been a leader in the pharmaceutical industry's response to the HIV pandemic, and holds the patents for several key components of the fixed dose combinations recommended by the World Health Organization, as well as for some of the newest and most effective HIV drugs. But to remain a leader in the HIV response, J&J has to do its part to help those who cannot afford premium rates for treatment to obtain access to essential medicines.

    Thanks to the unprecedented international mobilization against AIDS, 6.6... million people are now on antiretroviral therapy (ART). But another 7.6... million who need ART are still not receiving it.

    In response to this challenge, the MPP Foundation was founded in 2010 to stimulate innovation and improve access to HIV medicines through the negotiation of voluntary licenses on medicine patents that enable robust generic competition and facilitate the development of new formulations. But it can only work if enough leading companies contribute their patents, and J&J is central to this picture.

    J&J has been considering entering into negotiations with the MPP Foundation, but signs are that the imminent announcement will be negative, and a huge setback for improving access to HIV treatment.

    Think of all those around the world who, as a result of lack of access to life-saving medicines, will die today and every day until universal access to treatment is achieved.

    But there's still a chance for us to help J&J do the right thing. If you use Twitter, tweet the message below!

    @JNJComm Come on Johnson & Johnson! Do the right thing! Join the Medicines #PatentPool! bit.ly/tc20Pg @e_alliance

    Either cut and paste the above message or give us a Retweet!

The Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance is a broad international network of churches and Christian organizations cooperating in advocacy on food and HIV and AIDS. The Alliance is based in Geneva, Switzerland. For more information, see http://www.e-alliance.ch/

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