B-HRD Project Launches Special Feature on “Big Pharma” and Access to HIV/AIDS Drugs

Publish Date: 
Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Access to essential medicines is critical to the realization of the human right to adequate health. Yet all too often, the high cost of medicines effectively deprives individuals of this fundamental right. As multinational pharmaceutical companies ("Big Pharma") pursue aggressive strategies to protect patents for key drugs, access to essential medicines is frustrated and concerns regarding the rising cost of life-saving drugs intensify. The situation is particularly acute for those living with HIV/AIDS in the Global South, whose lives depend on access to affordable antiretroviral (ARV) medicines.

 Photo Courtesy © Rico Gustav, APN+

A new "In Focus" feature launched by the Business and Human Rights Documentation (B-HRD) Project details the tactics pursued by "Big Pharma" to protect patents for key drugs in India and Brazil, increasing costs of life-saving drugs and frustrating access to essential medicines.  The feature showcases the strategies of human rights defenders to challenge abusive business practices and counterbalance patent safeguards with strong human rights protections.

Learn more here and support efforts to demand justice for people living with HIV/AIDS.


The Business and Human Rights Documentation (B-HRD, pronounced Be Heard) Project is a new interactive, multi-lingual information portal that provides grassroots groups, NGOs, experts, advocates, academics, and the public at large with vital information about the human rights impacts of business activities, and with much needed advocacy tools to hold businesses accountable in a globalized world.

Designed to complement the Business & Human Rights Resource Centre, B-HRD has three major sections: an In Focus section that highlights particular situations of abuse and the strategies used by human rights defenders to hold businesses accountable; a Tools & Strategies Forum that offers tools, resources, and advocacy strategies to help prevent and seek justice for business-related abuses; and a searchable Database of over 160 human rights reports that document first-hand the impact of businesses on human rights.

The B-HRD Project is a joint initiative of the International Network on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ESCR-Net) and the International Human Rights Clinic of the Center for Human Rights and Global Justice (CHRGJ) at New York University School of Law.

Photo Courtesy © 2011, Rico Gustav, APN+