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Corporate interests should not trump access to medicines for EU citizens in secret TTIP negotiations

As the European Union (EU) and the United States (US) continue the fourth round of Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership Agreement (TTIP) negotiations in Brussels this week, Health Action International is gravely concerned. Against the already grim background of austerity measures and public health cuts, the European Commission may be about to enter into a secretive trade deal that will sacrifice even more of EU citizens’ health for the benefit of multinational industry profits.
Read the full statement here

Read our joint position paper that analyses five of the most worrying proposals that are being pushed by the pharmaceutical industry for inclusion in TTIP here

Outcome of WHO Global Technical Meeting:
‘Status Quo Wins Again’

On 4-5 December 2013 experts at a Global Technical Meeting, hosted by the World Health Organization (WHO), selected biomedical research and development (R&D) ‘demonstration projects’ to go forward and receive financing. The eight projects that have now been selected, although perfectly scientifically sound, do not divert from the R&D status quo and will demonstrate little, at best, and, nothing, at worst, in terms of establishing new innovation models that use alternative incentives to the current monopoly driven model.

Innovative proposals, disruptive to the status quo, did actually make the 22-proposal shortlist, but were eliminated in the final selection exercise in Geneva and will not go forward. At first sight, this appears to be the direct result of the criteria used for selection; however, whether the demonstration project would test a new approach to R&D was only used as a third-level criterion for selection. This is unfortunate and Health Action International is deeply disappointed with the result. It is difficult to imagine what lessons the selected demonstration projects will offer the current system of global health R&D. They will certainly not contribute to the search for a structural solution to the current failure of global health R&D. Read HAI Europe's Statement here

HAI Europe Policy Paper on Clinical Trial Data Transparency

In the context of the current negotiations on the Clinical Trials Regulation and the EMA’s work towards the proactive publication of trial data, HAI Europe has published a policy paper “Protecting citizens’ health: transparency of clinical trial data on medicines in the EU”, with the objective to shape the debate towards greater data transparency.

Many adverse drug reactions, including deaths, could have been avoided, had the public known about the undisclosed effects of medicines. In addition, open access to trial data can facilitate independent re-analyses of medicines’ claimed efficacy and comparison between therapies. The transparency of clinical trial data also responds to an ethical obligation. According to the Declaration of Helsinki, authors have the duty to make publicly available the results of their studies: whether positive, negative or inconclusive.
Read the HAI Europe Policy Paper here