Announcement for the media
We invite you to participate in an action and attend a court session during which patients with HIV/AIDS will require that the court changes the expert who has been unable to conduct an examination of drugs for nearly a year, in such a way delaying the case.
For two and a half years, the largest patients’ organization CO “100%Life” (former All-Ukrainian Network of PLWH) has been trying to challenge in the Ukrainian court a monopoly on medicine for the HIV treatment, Lopinavir/Ritonavir (Aluvia) produced by AbbVie. Because of this monopoly, the state and donors had to pay extra UAH 370 million in 2018, and 138 000 patients are still waiting for treatment. Due to the continuation of “evergreen” patents for medicine, AbbVie holds a monopoly on the Ukrainian market. Patients require an examination of so-called “uniqueness” of the drug formula, which the court has failed to do for about a year. This delay does not allow other cheaper drugs (generics) to enter the Ukrainian market and provide treatment for hundreds of thousands of HIV patients.
Before the beginning of the court session, HIV patients will hold a special action near the Northern Economic Court of Appeal. Activists will burn 370 million souvenir hryvnias, which symbolize the cost of judges’ delay. It was the sum that was spent from the state budget of Ukraine for the purchase of monopoly branded HIV medicines during the year while the examination of the drug’s uniqueness is “going on.”
The action will be conducted on January 17 at 12:20 p.m. at the address: 1 Sholudenko Str., the Northern Economic Court of Appeal.
Participants of the action:
For accreditation and for more information, please contact:
Anastasiya Bondarchuk, 097 394 49 56, email@example.com,
Daria Kovalenko, 0954196798, firstname.lastname@example.org
To the attention of journalists who intend to take part in the court session: the case number is 910/10050/16 under the chairmanship of the judge Serhiy Sotnikov (a courtroom number 3). The session starts at 12:55.
Because of formal patents, cheaper analogues of HIV drugs cannot enter the Ukrainian market and, therefore, 138 000 Ukrainians cannot receive treatment.
On the case: On May 31, 2016, CO “100%Life” filed a lawsuit in the Kyiv Economic Court of Appeal to hold the patent for Lopinavir/Ritonavir (Aluvia) invalid. The claims of the Network of PLWH were based on the following: the disputed patents did not meet the requirements of the legislation on novelty and inventive level, and the legal monopoly of the company-patent holder (AbbVie Inc., USA) allowed it to overprice this drug. As a result, in 2018, the state and donors spent UAH 536 million to buy only the Lopinavir/Ritonavir for 27 000 HIV patients. In the case of the patents cancellation, it will be possible to buy this drug at three times lower price spending UAH 163 million. This will potentially allow free treatment for 139 000 more patients with HIV.
On March 6, 2017, the Kyiv Economic Court of Appeal dismissed the lawsuit even without scheduling examination of patents in compliance with the requirements of the legislation. Reasons for dismissal are as follow: the disputed patents do not violate the rights or the interests protected by the law of the plaintiff as a patient organization and, according to judges’ opinion; it is not proved that in the case of patents cancellation the price of the drug will be reduced. These reasons for dismissal are completely unjustified and controversial from a legal point of view.
About CO “100%Life”:
CO “100%Life” (formerly known as the Network of PLWH) is the largest patients’ organization in Ukraine whose mission is to fight for Life. The Network works with patients and for patients including representing the interests of people living with HIV in 25 regions of Ukraine.
More information you can find on the website: http://network.org.ua or on the Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/All.Ukrainian.Network.of.PLWH