Forum

Interesting court case re patents

Interesting court case re patents.
One of the problems with western medicine is that there is a tendency for the NHS to ration licenced drugs on the basis of cost and not provide drugs not licenced for a particular problem.
We could sight Tysabri as a licenced treatment not given to all who would like to have it and LDN as a drug often not provided due to lack of a licence.
The drug industry often tries to modify an existing either natural therapy or existing drug to gain a new patent. This can be of benefit it that it gets the new application ‘approved’ but can also make it largely irrelevant to a particular patient group because it then become a very restricted supply due to cost.
http://www.talktalk.co.uk/news/world/article/drug-patent-case-will-help-poor/83519/
At least India seems to be trying to do something to at least define that the drug industry will not be able to profit other than from genuine new inventions.

What an interesting post, shame about all the errors.

The NHS, in the person of NICE, do not “ration drugs on the basis of cost”. They do restrict the prescribing of drugs on the basis of Cost Effectiveness. The NHS can only do this for England and Wales. The last time I looked, Europe was a lot bigger than these two countries.

Just what a court case in India has to do with the situation in England and Wales is not very clear (always assuming it has anything to do with England and Wales at all). Big companies do try it on with governments to obtain a commercial advantage - it matters little whether they are a drug company, or a steel company or a motor manufacturer. Since companies have a duty to their shareholders to maximise profits, it is rather ingenuous to expect them not to do so.

The court case, by the way, was a try-on pure and simple - trying to get a patent extension by threatening to move research elsewhere. The NHS do not really care if a drug is in patent or out of patent - cost effectiveness is the criteria when NICE approve a drug. This does not, of course, mean very much if the old PCTs, or the new Care Commisioning bodies do not have the money to pay for it.

Claiming “LDN as a drug often not provided due to lack of a licence.” is just a bit of a smokescreen. It is well known that most (perhaps all) PCTs would not allow LDN to be provided on the NHS does not mean that it was hard to obtain. Anyone who reads this forum regularly will know that prescriptions for LDN are easily obtained, and will know which chemist will fill those prescriptions. The old story: that there could not be a trial of LDN to provide the sort of data that NICE require was because it was out of patent has been disproved. TNI Biotech bought up the patents from Dr Bihari. Then they announced their plans for a Phase III trial. Who are TNI Biotech? Just one of the biggest manufacturers in the world of anti-cancer drugs.

Yes, an interesting post - just not the way that the OP meant it to be.

Geoff

Thanks Geoff You have explained LDN for me & thanks again