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Agreement To Sell Generic Drug To Prevent HIV Infection Reached

Unitaid and the Medicines Patent Pool said on Thursday that an agreement had been reached to permit the sale of a low-cost generic form of a long-term HIV prophylactic medicine in low-income nations, where the majority of infections occur.

As part of the agreement, ViiV Healthcare, a division of British pharmaceutical behemoth GSK, will permit a limited number of manufacturers to create generic versions of Cabotegravir LA, a long-acting PrEP medication for HIV.

In 90 countries where more than 70% of all new HIV infections occurred in 2020, the injectable form of cabotegravir, which has been proved to provide two months of protection against infection, will be made available thanks to the agreement, according to Unitaid.

According to Unitaid spokesman Herve Verhoosel, “access to an effective long-acting HIV prevention alternative could considerably help to the objective of eliminating HIV transmission and ending the epidemic by 2030.”

He continued, “Groups who experience very high rates of infection, such as men who have sex with males and sex workers, would be notably impacted by efforts to promote access to Cabotegravir LA for PrEP.”

Only recently have long-lasting cabotegravir injections become accessible, and studies have shown that they are much more efficient than the daily-required oral form.

However, the cost — a year of treatment in the United States cost $22,000 earlier this year — prevented a widespread rollout in all but high-income nations.

“Global top priority”

On Thursday, the World Health Organization announced updated recommendations for cabotegravir, urging nations to work toward making the medication quickly accessible to people who need it.

Meg Doherty, director of the WHO’s global HIV, hepatitis, and sexually transmitted infection programs, said in a statement, “We believe these new guidelines will help speed country efforts to start to plan and administer CAB-LA alongside other HIV prevention alternatives.”

The announcement comes one day after a fresh study was released at the International AIDS Conference in Montreal, Canada, which revealed that COVID-19 and other problems have reduced the number of resources available for the global battle against HIV.

Over the global targets of combatting the virus, 1.5 million new infections were reported last year.

Adeeba Kamarulzaman, president of the International AIDS Society, which organizes the meeting, stated that long-acting PrEP “may play a key role in solving the HIV pandemic, but right now, very few individuals can obtain it.”

She declared in a statement that “expanding affordable access to this game-changing preventative technology must be a key global priority.”

To provide fair access to medical advances in low- and middle-income countries, Unitaid is a worldwide health project.

The United-founded and UN-supported Medicines Patent Pool attempt to license necessary medications for generic distribution in low- and middle-income countries.

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Unitaid and the Medicines Patent Pool said on Thursday that an agreement had been reached to permit the sale of a low-cost generic form of a long-term HIV prophylactic medicine in low-income nations, where the majority of infections occur.

As part of the agreement, ViiV Healthcare, a division of British pharmaceutical behemoth GSK, will permit a limited number of manufacturers to create generic versions of Cabotegravir LA, a long-acting PrEP medication for HIV.

In 90 countries where more than 70% of all new HIV infections occurred in 2020, the injectable form of cabotegravir, which has been proved to provide two months of protection against infection, will be made available thanks to the agreement, according to Unitaid.

According to Unitaid spokesman Herve Verhoosel, “access to an effective long-acting HIV prevention alternative could considerably help to the objective of eliminating HIV transmission and ending the epidemic by 2030.”

He continued, “Groups who experience very high rates of infection, such as men who have sex with males and sex workers, would be notably impacted by efforts to promote access to Cabotegravir LA for PrEP.”

Only recently have long-lasting cabotegravir injections become accessible, and studies have shown that they are much more efficient than the daily-required oral form.

However, the cost — a year of treatment in the United States cost $22,000 earlier this year — prevented a widespread rollout in all but high-income nations.

“Global top priority”

On Thursday, the World Health Organization announced updated recommendations for cabotegravir, urging nations to work toward making the medication quickly accessible to people who need it.

Meg Doherty, director of the WHO’s global HIV, hepatitis, and sexually transmitted infection programs, said in a statement, “We believe these new guidelines will help speed country efforts to start to plan and administer CAB-LA alongside other HIV prevention alternatives.”

The announcement comes one day after a fresh study was released at the International AIDS Conference in Montreal, Canada, which revealed that COVID-19 and other problems have reduced the number of resources available for the global battle against HIV.

Over the global targets of combatting the virus, 1.5 million new infections were reported last year.

Adeeba Kamarulzaman, president of the International AIDS Society, which organizes the meeting, stated that long-acting PrEP “may play a key role in solving the HIV pandemic, but right now, very few individuals can obtain it.”

She declared in a statement that “expanding affordable access to this game-changing preventative technology must be a key global priority.”

To provide fair access to medical advances in low- and middle-income countries, Unitaid is a worldwide health project.

The United-founded and UN-supported Medicines Patent Pool attempt to license necessary medications for generic distribution in low- and middle-income countries.

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Our newsletter gives you access to a curated selection of the most important stories daily.

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