On March 18, 2015, Rabin Martin President and CEO Jeff Sturchio participated in the panel discussion Successful Public Health Licensing through Industry-MPP Partnership. The event was hosted by Medicines Patent Pool (MPP) and held in Geneva, Switzerland. The Medicines Patent Pool (MPP) is a UN-supported organization that works with multilateral organizations, government, industry and the HIV/AIDS community to reduce cost and expand access of HIV/AIDS medications in the developing world through voluntary licensing and patent pooling. Philippe Duneton, Deputy Executive Director of UNITAID and Eduardo Pisani, Director General of the International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers (IFPMA), gave opening remarks, follow by brief addresses on voluntary public health licensing by Greg Perry, Executive Director of the MPP, and Sandeep Juneja, Business Development Director of the MPP. Jeff facilitated the subsequent panel discussion, which featured Philippe Duneton; Christopher Game, CPO of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria; Manuel Goncalves, Vice President and Head of External Affairs and Communication for ViiV Healthcare; Joseph Perriëns, Coordinator for HIV Technologies and Commodities of the WHO; and Umesh K, Associate Vice President & Business Head of Antiretrovirals for Aurobindo.
The panel discussed the successes of the MPP in expanding access to HIV and AIDS medications worldwide, but warned that the model may not translate directly to other infectious diseases like tuberculosis. The looming challenge for UNITAID, the MPP, and all players working to decrease costs of medications for low-income populations lies in expanding funding and support to other infectious diseases without losing focus and ground in the fight against HIV/AIDS.