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U.S. Seeks Balance in Patenting Agreements to Help Impoverished People

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11c medicineAccording to a U.S. Trade Representative, the United States is trying hard to balance the requirements of the poor and developing countries who face ongoing medical emergencies and the rights of U.S. pharmaceutical patent holders. It’s a tough balance to strike. Disputes between certain U.S. pharmaceutical companies and the governments of Brazil and Thailand demonstrate the need for flexibility and an open dialogue.


It is not always possible for developing countries to purchase patented drugs at standard prices; therefore, the U.S. government has introduced some flexibility within the medical patent protection under World Trade Organization (WTO) rules. Medical patents that deal with malaria, HIV/AIDS, and tuberculosis are most effected.

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