Are pharma giants living up to big promises on development?
In the article, Damiano de Felice and Jayasree K. Iyer write about how pharmaceutical companies are taking action to improve maternal health, and make the case for tracking corporations as well as governments when it comes to meeting global development targets.
The pharmaceutical industry plays a fundamental role in achieving international development targets. This was recognised in the millennium development goals (MDGs), which explicitly mention that providing access to affordable essential drugs in low- and middle-income countries has to be achieved “in cooperation with pharmaceutical companies”. Yet efforts to track progress towards the MDGs have focused mainly on government action rather than corporate contributions.
The Access to Medicine Foundation has stepped into this gap. Since 2008, it has tracked the commitments and actions of pharmaceutical companies to improve access to medicine in low- and middle-income countries. It measures 20 of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies on their policies and practices for increasing access to medicine.