PhRMA Statement on the United Nations High Level Panel Report on Access to Medicines

WASHINGTON, D.C. (September 14, 2016) – Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) president and CEO Stephen J. Ubl issued the following statement on today’s release of the report of the United Nations Secretary General’s High-Level Panel on Access to Medicines.

“Biopharmaceutical innovators and the millions of men and women who work in this field across the United States and around the world welcome constructive and collaborative discussions on health technology and increasing access to care.

“Researching, developing and delivering valuable new medicines, and getting them to patients, is at the center of everything the innovative biopharmaceutical industry does. We partner with others who share the goal of achieving healthy lives for all and work on real solutions that are bringing better health care to patients around the world.”

“The UN High Level Panel (HLP) on Access to Medicines was a missed opportunity to address the wide array of barriers to access that far too many people face every day.

“The ability of patients to obtain quality care depends on many factors – including health care infrastructure, government policies, adequacy of funding, the presence of trained health care providers, health literacy and stigma. Addressing these barriers, in the pursuit of universal health coverage, requires collaborative efforts and creative solutions which are workable in the long term and practically implementable.

“The HLP should have provided the opportunity for an informed, balanced, and inclusive dialogue that can make a difference to the lives of people who do not have adequate access to treatments for these and other reasons. However, the Panel’s report acknowledges that it was limited in its mandate and unable to look at all the factors influencing access to medicines.

“As a consequence, the final report focuses narrowly on solutions which fail to recognize and address the complexity of biopharmaceutical research and development and the significant work already taking place to advance access to care. As such, neither this report nor its recommendations can be a sound basis for further consideration or action by the UN system.”

 About PhRMA

The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) represents the country’s leading innovative biopharmaceutical research companies, which are devoted to discovering and developing medicines that enable patients to live longer, healthier and more productive lives. Since 2000, PhRMA member companies have invested more than half a trillion dollars in the search for new treatments and cures, including an estimated $58.8 billion in 2015 alone.

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