Human Rights Guidelines for Pharmaceutical Companies

May 5, 2009 - access to medicines, especially in relation to developing countries. ... the long journey towards the sustained application of the right to health to ...
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UNITED NATIONS

A General Assembly

Distr. GENERAL A/HRC/11/12/Add.2 5 May 2009 Original: ENGLISH

HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL Eleventh session Agenda item 3 PROMOTION AND PROTECTION OF ALL HUMAN RIGHTS, CIVIL, POLITICAL, ECONOMIC, SOCIAL AND CULTURAL RIGHTS, INCLUDING THE RIGHT TO DEVELOPMENT Report of the Special Rapporteur on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health, Paul Hunt* Annex MISSION TO GLAXOSMITHKLINE**

* The present report was submitted late in order to incorporate the most recent information. Paul Hunt ended his mandate as Special Rapporteur on 31 July 2008. His report is circulated as an addendum to the report of his successor, Anand Grover, who took up the mandate on 1 August 2008. ** The summary of the present report is circulated in all official languages. The report itself, annexed to the summary, is circulated as received, in the language of submission only.

GE.09-13131 (E) 130509

A/HRC/11/12/Add.2 page 2 Summary The Special Rapporteur on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health visited the headquarters of GlaxoSmithKline, one of the world’s leading research-based pharmaceutical companies, in June 2008 for substantive interviews with the company’s senior management. In the Special Rapporteur’s previous reports, he examined States’ responsibilities in relation to access to medicines. However, enhancing access to medicines is a shared responsibility. The Millennium Development Goals recognize that pharmaceutical companies have a responsibility to improve access to medicines. In the present report, the Special Rapporteur outlines the responsibilities of pharmaceutical companies, including innovator, generic and biotechnology companies, with regard to the right to health in relation to access to medicines. From the perspective of the right to health, the Special Rapporteur reviews some GlaxoSmithKline policies regarding access to medicines, especially in relation to developing countries. Besides highlighting some good practices, the Special Rapporteur outlines some of the obstacles impeding the company’s attempts to improve access, such as failing health systems, and makes numerous recommendations addressed to GlaxoSmithKline, pharmaceutical companies in general, States and others. The Special Rapporteur is most grateful to GlaxoSmithKline management for inviting him to prepare the present report and for their cooperation throughout the mission.

A/HRC/11/12/Add.2 page 3 CONTENTS Paragraphs

Page

I.

INTRODUCTION ...........................................................................

1 - 15

4

II.

RESPONSIBILITIES IN THE FIELD OF THE RIGHT TO HEALTH OF PHARMACEUTICAL COMPANIES IN RELATION TO ACCESS TO MEDICINES ............................

16 - 43

6

A.

Framework of the Special Representative ...............................

17 - 19

7

B.

Right to health framework and pharmaceutical companies in general ...............................................................

20 - 34

7

Right to health framework and patent-holding pharmaceutical companies .......................................................

35 - 41

11

Conclusion ...............................................................................

42 - 43

13

III.

GLAXOSMITHKLINE: A BRIEF INTRODUCTION ..................

44 - 56

13

IV.

RIGHT TO HEALTH ISSUES .......................................................

57 - 105

16

A.

Pricing ......................................................................................

58 - 70