Archive for November, 2008

RA 9502 IRR: Key to Affordable Medicines

Posted on November 26, 2008. Filed under: News |

Published in Negros Daily Bulletin
On: November 06, 2008

Ayos na Gamot sa Abot-kayang Presyo (AGAP) Coalition, a crusade of labor, health, industry, agriculture, and the consumer sector commends the Department of Health and the Intellectual Property Office for finalizing the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of R.A. 9502 otherwise known as the
Universally Accessible Cheaper and Quality Medicines Act of 2008.

AGAP is happy that, at long last, the IRR of the Affordable Medicines law was signed by Health Sec. Francisco Duque last Nov. 4, 2008 and will become effective 15 days after its publication. AGAP had been pushing for this measure since the 13th Congress and was supportive of Affordable Medicines Bill filed and advocated for by Sen. Mar Roxas and other members of the House of Representatives.

We laud DOH and IPO for conducting transparent consultations with the stakeholders in the crafting of the IRR and for taking into serious consideration the issues and comments raised by the Civil Society Organizations in said hearings.

Also, we thank the DOH for making the NGOs an active participant in the enforcement of this measure, as stated in the IRR.

We believe that the effective implementation of the measure will surely bring down the prices of medicines in the country brought about by provisions that will create meaningful competition in the pharmaceutical industry such as compulsory licensing and parallel importation. However, we would like to challenge the DOH and IPO to come up with rules on how local drug manufacturers can make use of the “early working provision” of the law, which would allow the early development of generic versions of a drug or medicine before its patent expires.

AGAP will continue to support the various government agencies for the efficient enforcement of the measure and other campaigns and advocacies for people’s greater access to medicine.

Some affiliates of AGAP are the following: Association of Barangay Health Workers (BHW) of NCR, WomanHealth Phils., National Confederation of Labor, PEACE Foundation, Nationwide Association of Consumers, Inc., Citizens Alliance for Consumer Power.*

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