Stories: Pharmaceuticals

  • Drug Deals: How Big Pharma and the Indian Government Are Letting Millions of Patients Down

    THE DELHI OFFICE of the controller general of patents, designs and trademarks is situated in the neighbourhood of Dwarka Sector 14, a 45-minute drive from the capital’s centres of power. There is a placid air about the place, and on winter afternoons you’re likely to spot the odd group of junior employees sunning themselves on the...

  • The Problem With Tying Health Care to Trade

    I first met Cesar Alva on a gray winter afternoon in downtown Lima. He wore a knit stocking cap over a thick head of hair, drawing attention to his slight underbite and jaundiced eyes. Alva lives with his parents, a retired housekeeper and construction worker, in a neighborhood at the center of Peru’s swelling capital city. He...

  • Why South Africa’s Health Minister Is So Worried About India Caving in to Big Pharma

    The South African health minister Aaron Motsoaledi, in an exclusive interview to Scroll, said that he was extremely "scared and worried" about the possibility of pro-industry changes in India’s intellectual property rights regime. For decades, India has been at the forefront of a legal battle to make lifesaving drugs available at affordable prices for much of the...

  • Resisting Resistance: What’s Next in the Fight Against Malaria?

    It's been described as a crisis in the anti-malaria community. Resistance to ACTs (artemisinin-based combination therapies), the oft-described super drug in efforts to combat malaria, have reached a tipping point. The most deadly malaria parasite, Plasmodium Falciparum, has for years been altering its genetics in response to the drug. The resistance, first reported at the border of Thailand and...

  • Preventing Drug Shortages With Cell Phones in Malawi

    Saidi Masemba's clinic is a small, two-room mud hut in central Malawi that serves approximately 3,000 local residents. He sees roughly 15-20 patients per day, usually children under 5 years old suffering from malnutrition, malaria, dehydration and diarrhea. In treating these preventable diseases, one of Masemba's biggest setbacks is access to medication and supplies. Often, he has to turn...