14 March 2013

 Many drugs cost far more in South Africa than in countries with strict patent-vetting processes... South Africa grants patents without substantially reviewing applications first and routinely gives patents for new versions of old medicine, thus in effect extending patent life beyond the normal 20-year period. Brazil, in contrast, examines each application before a patent is granted... "I am shocked by how much South Africans pay for many drugs, for example, the TB drug Linezolid," says Leena Menghaney, a lawyer who works with MSF''s Access Campaign. "In India, generic Linezolid is available for less than R10 a tablet. In South Africa, Pfizer has a patent on Linezolid and to get it for patients in need MSF pays R660 per tablet." 

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