Report of the Inquiry of the All Party Parliamentary Group on HIV and AIDS into access to medicines in the developing world December 2014
Reports And Publications
For better quality, more sustainable health services globally
A report by the All Party Parliamentary Groups on Global Health; HIV/AIDs; Population, Development and Reproductive Health; Global Tuberculosis; and Patient and Public Involvement in Health and Social Care
This report takes a global perspective on an issue that concerns us all, wherever we live: whether healthcare is something that is done ‘to’ us or ‘with’ us.
The Media Challenge
Huge progress is being made in tackling HIV, yet one fundamental obstacle remains: stigma. It’s clear to all commentators that eradicating the shame related to HIV is a priority; what’s less clear is how you go about achieving this change.
Stigma manifests itself in numerous ways and the result is that many people are reluctant to come forward for HIV counselling, testing and treatment and are much less likely to take the appropriate medication. The stark consequence of this is that incidence rates are far higher than they should be.
Call for evidence- Access to Medicines in the Developing World
APPG enquiry: Achieving Universal Access – The Treatment Timebomb Part II
Deadline for Submissions is Wednesday 19th March 2014, 9am
Background to the Inquiry
In 2009 the All Party Parliamentary Group on HIV and AIDS conducted an inquiry on the supply of affordable anti-retroviral medicines (ARVS), which concluded that the high price of second and third line drugs for HIV was a major barrier to access to HIV treatment. The report was successful in mobilising political support for the Medicines Patent Pool, and in highlighting the “Treatment time bomb” which exists as people in developing countries switch from first line HIV treatment to more expensive second and third line drugs.
Download the updated report [1.0 MB]
Third edition September 2013
Halve It! Early testing saves lives: HIV is a public health priority
There are over 22,000 in the UK who are infected with HIV but don’t know it. This is 26% of all people living with HIV. Most will be diagnosed eventually but for many it will be when the virus has already caused their bodies serious damage and after the time they should have started HIV treatment.
Undiagnosed and late diagnosed HIV is bad for individual health, bad for public health and bad for the public purse.
This report explains why tackling it must be a Government priority and what steps we can take to make progress.
The All Party Parliamentary Group on HIV and AIDS is a member of the Halve It coalition and helped to write the report. The aim of the coalition is to halve the proportion of people being diagnosed late and the proportion of people who do not know their HIV status in just 5 years, by 2015. The Halve It coalition includes clinicians, patients, business people, politicians, charities and academics.
Download the updated report [1.0 MB]
Download the original report [1.08 MB]
The All Party Parliamentary Group on HIV and AIDS Health White paper response Liberating the NHS
This summer the Government published its proposals for NHS reform in a series of White Papers. These include proposals on commissioning, setting ‘outcomes’ and the splitting of the health service into an individual patient care service and a public health service. This document is the APPG’s response to these consultations.
Download the report [119 Kb]
Health is Wealth - The UK Government's role in achieving the Health MDGs :
A Joint Position paper with other health APPGs.
The APPG on HIV and AIDS uses this joint position paper to call for increased focus on MDGs 4,5 and 6 when leaders meet at the September MDG review conference in New York.
In particular the paper calls on leaders to agree an "an ambitious plan to extend universal access to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support and to tackle new threats including the rise in HIV/TB co-infection."
It calls on the UK Government to provide its fair share to the replenishment of the Global Fund in October.
The paper is being sent by the Chairs of each of the involved All Party Groups to the Prime Minister and to Nick Clegg MP, who is attending the MDG summit. It is also being sent to DFID Ministers for a response.
To support the call for Global Fund replenishment we have set up EDM 532
Please ask your MP to sign up to it.
The Treatment Timebomb: June 2009
The APPG Inquiry into long-term access to HIV treatment in the developing world
The Treatment Timebomb describes how by 2030 over 50 million people will need HIV treatment compared to 9 million who need it today.
Millions of those needing treatment in future will need more expensive medicines, having become resistant to the basic HIV combination therapy. These ‘second-line’ treatments currently cost at least seven times more. When the basic treatment stops working, getting them is a matter of life or death.
Some people will also need to switch from the basic combination to newer less-toxic drugs because they experience serious side effects. The combination of more people needing more complex treatment is, says the report, a timebomb that needs to be addressed now, to avoid crisis later.
Governments around the world, including the UK, have signed up to the goal of ‘Universal Access to HIV treatment, prevention, care and support’ by 2010. The world is not on track to meet this target with only a third of the nine million people who need it having access to HIV treatment. This is despite the fact that for now, most people are on the cheap therapy.
The report argues that cutting the price of medicines is possible. Ten years ago the basic HIV treatment cost over $10,000 per person, per year. Today, thanks to generic production, these same medicines are available for just $87 per person enabling 3 million people to be treated across the world.
It says that to avoid a treatment crisis these kind of price reductions need to happen again with the newer HIV medicines.
It urges pharmaceutical companies to cooperate by allowing generic manufacturers to produce their HIV medicines cheaply, specifically for developing countries. It asks them to put their patents into a ‘patent pool’ for this purpose.
In welcoming the report, International Development Minister, Mike Foster, said:
“This important report reminds us that while it is absolutely vital that we work to reduce the human cost of HIV by focusing our efforts on preventing new infections, we must also face up to the stark reality of the treatment challenge we face. The pharmaceutical industry has an opportunity to act now to help prevent future human catastrophe. It is time for them to state their clear commitment to make new HIV medicines affordable to those who need them most, by working with UNITAID to develop a patent pool.”
The inquiry had three stages. Firstly, in February 2009 the APPG sent out a call for evidence to all of its contacts - it received written responses from pharmaceutical companies, NGOs and international foundations, such as the Clinton AIDS Initiative. Secondly, the APPG convened a high-level round table in parliament for senior charity HIV experts and pharmaceutical company officials, MPs and Peers. Finally, a cross-party group of MPs and Peers visited Geneva to talk to the WHO, UNAIDS, the Global Fund for AIDS, TB and malaria, and other relevant organisations.
Migration and HIV: 2003
In 2003, the Group held a Parliamentary Inquiry to look at the issue of Migration and HIV in the UK, focussing on how the Government could improve the lives of migrants with HIV. The report of the Inquiry, was published on 10 July 2003. A copy of the report, Migration and HIV Improving Lives, can be forwarded to you in PDF format and copies of the evidence transcripts in PDF format are also available from the Group.
Download the report [2.3 MB]
Human Rights: 2001
In 2001, the Group held a Parliamentary Inquiry to look at the UK Government’s policies relating to the International Guidelines on HIV/AIDS and Human Rights, both within the UK and internationally. The Report of that Inquiry, published in July 2001, can be obtained from the Group in PDF format. Transcripts of the sessions of evidence are also available from the Group in PDF format.
Download the report [187 Kb]
HIV/AIDS Strategy: 1998
In 1998, the Group held a series of Parliamentary Hearings to consider what action the UK should take to address HIV/AIDS, and to make recommendations for a national strategy on HIV/AIDS. A summary of its recommendations can be obtained from the Group in PDF format. Send us an email to request a copy from firstname.lastname@example.org