C15 - Are intellectual property rights justifiable in public health emergencies?


Organised in collaboration with FIP’s Industrial Pharmacy Section


Mr Sola Solarin (Nigeria)


The COVID-19 pandemic challenged the world to collaborate in an unprecedented manner to confront a health challenge that posed a huge threat. Governments, research laboratories, multilateral institutions and healthcare providers surrendered rights and provided guarantees and other resources to ensure that the tools required to confront the pandemic were available in enough quantities and in good time to reduce mortalities.

However, some research-based pharmaceutical companies resisted the request to suspend their patents on vaccines to enable more companies to manufacture COVID-19 vaccines, the most important tools in the control of the pandemic. They argued that there were more fundamental problems to be solved to make vaccines available.



14:00 – 14:10      Introduction by the chair 
14:10 – 14:35


The value of intellectual property and voluntary licensing in addressing global health emergencies
Mr Michael Swita, European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EPFIA), Belgium

14:35 – 15:00


Do patents impede responses/access in public health emergencies?
Dr Arinola Joda, University of Lagos, Nigeria

15:00 – 15:20   Panel discussion and Q&A 
15:20 – 15:30


Conclusion by the chair 

Learning Objectives

  1. To explore the place of intellectual property rights in global health emergencies.
  2. To explore alternative approaches to managing Intellectual Property that will reward the innovators and facilitate vaccine availability.
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