DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.18203/2320-6012.ijrms20150836

Has the commercialisation of medical research gone too far?

Ian R. Barker

Abstract


Government policy has been complicit in the increasing role of commercial companies in research, which in turn have little incentive to share the benefits of research. As a result, huge swathes of medical research rely on commercialisation and related patent protection in order to thrive. There is a distinct lack of evidence that commercialisation has led to an improvement in public health, the claim of increased innovation simply does not have empirical support. Commercialisation has led to skewed benefits in favour of companies, whereby industry is using the public’s resource without adequately paying for it, this imbalance may be seen as a form of exploitation. In this paper I argue that the skewed relationship between commercial and public interest needs to be addressed in order to ensure we meet healthcare needs of our patients in the future and ensuring the healthcare remains affordable.


Keywords


Health research, Commercialisation, Funding

Full Text:

PDF

References


Boldrin M, Levine D. Against Intellectual Monopoly: First edition; Cambridge University. 2008:212-43.

Saha A, Grabowskib H, Birnbaumc H, Greenbergd P, Bizane O. Generic Competition in the US Pharmaceutical Industry: International Journal of The Economics of Business. 2006:13:15-38.

Gold R, Kaplan W, Orbinski J, Harland-Logan S, Marandi S. Are Patents Impeding Medical Care and Innovation? PLoS Med. 2010;7:1-5.

Kim JY, Farmer P. AIDS in 2006 moving towards one world, one hope? N Eng J Med. 355:645-7.

Pollack A. Bristol-Myers and Athersys Make Deal on Gene Patents; New York Times. 2001:8.

United States. General Accounting Office. Technology Transfer: Agencies' Rights to Federally Sponsored Biomedical Inventions. Washington D.C. 2003;2-16.

Pogge T. Could globalisation be good for world health? Global Justice Theory Practice Rhetoric: Global Justice Network. 2007;1;1-10.

Mazzoleni R, Nelson R. The benefits and costs of strong patent protection: Research Policy. 1998:27:273-80.

Boldrin M, Levine D. The economics of ideas and intellectual property. PNAS. 2005;1252-6.

Bouchard R. Impact of U.S Supreme Court patent law on Canadian and global systems-based innovation ecologies. Health Law Journal. 2007:1-5.