Taiwan to ignore flu drug patent

Taiwan has announced that in order to protect their population from the possibility of avian bird flu it will ignore patent law and make generic, virtually identical versions of flu drugs, quicker and cheaper.

BBC news article

The moose is pleased by this, and hopes that, say, Africa, will invoke this precedent to manufacture generic retroviral AIDS drugs for their populations rather than pay the profit-mongering price of Western pharmacological firms.

This is another illustration that “information wants to be free”, whatever form it takes. And as technology spreads to the street, it will, in Gibson’s phrase, find its own uses for things. Again, these debates over intellectual property and patents will determine a substantial amount of our future, not the least of which the ethical status of our culture.

Comments are closed.