April 2, 2013
Gardiner Harris & Katie Thomas – The New York Times, 04/01/2013
NEW DELHI — People in developing countries worldwide will continue to have access to low-cost copycat versions of drugs for diseases like H.I.V. and cancer, at least for a while.
Production of the generic drugs in India, the world’s biggest provider of cheap medicines, was ensured on Monday in a ruling by the Indian Supreme Court.
The debate over global drug pricing is one of the most contentious issues between developed countries and the developing world. While poorer nations maintain they have a moral obligation to make cheaper, generic drugs available to their populations — by limiting patents in some cases — the brand name pharmaceutical companies contend the profits they reap are essential to their ability to develop and manufacture innovative medicines.
February 8, 2013
Fox Business/Dow Jones, 02/08/2013
According to the country’s census bureau, a decade of steady economic growth has lifted some 35 million Brazilians into a broad new middle class, a cohort now equal to about half Brazil’s total population of nearly 200 million souls.
“With the rise of the middle class, there is more demand for services, including health-care services,” said Humberto Selecetti, a KPMG consulting group partner. “Many international health-care companies are seeing only mediocre returns in their home markets, so they’re opting for investments in countries with greater potential. Brazil is one of these.”
According to Mr. Selecetti, only 23% of Brazilians currently have private health coverage of some kind, compared with 77% in the U.S. and 60% in Mexico.
September 7, 2011
Sarah de Sainte Croix – The Rio Times, 09/07/2011
Congress has earmarked September 28th as the date to decide on the terms of a constitutional amendment, known as Amendment 29, which will determine a mandatory percentage of revenue to be spent on public healthcare at federal, state and municipal levels. The amendment will mean increased spending on state-funded healthcare throughout Brazil, but has no clear funding source, leaving some lawmakers hesitant.
Despite her election campaign promises to provide better healthcare for the population, even President Dilma Rousseff’s response was unenthusiastic, calling Amendment 29 a “presente de grego,” (or “Greek present” – a Brazilian expression referencing the historical story of the Trojan Horse, meaning a gift you really don’t want).
Rousseff’s concerns are that there hasn’t been any specific source of funding suggested for the proposed increase in spending. Even so, Paulo Teixeira (leader of the PT, or Workers Party, in the Chamber of Deputies) proposed going ahead with the amendment regardless of the lack of funding.