Tag Archives: TRIPS

Even if you don’t believe in #Covid #vaccines, you should support the #TRIPSWaiver

Covid-19 is really exposing the ethical vacuum at the heart of the pharmaceutical industry, isn’t it?

Vaccines have been around for more than 220 years. Our kids are routinely vaccinated against diseases like measles, mumps, rubella and tetanus; we have ourselves vaccinated against more exotic diseases if we plan to travel to foreign countries. The companies making the vaccines are paid for them, and that’s fine.

But Covid-19 has created a huge opportunity for those companies because their vaccines are desperately-needed to stop people dying in a rapidly-spreading pandemic. They are charging huge amounts of money for their jabs and this is restricting the distribution of these substances around the world; if a country’s government can’t afford it, the people don’t get it.

The knock-on effect is that the people of these countries catch Covid-19 and it mutates, creating new variants, some of which are immune to the current vaccines.

It is unreasonable to restrict life-saving treatments in this way; it creates further threat to us all.

But the pharmaceutical companies are hiding behind TRIPS – the Agreement of Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property that restricts the right to manufacture vaccines to those companies that have patented them.

Labour MP Clive Lewis is supporting calls that initially came from South Africa and India to waive these companies’ patent rights temporarily, in order to make all of us safer, rather than just making a small number of shareholders richer.

Here’s his explanation of the issues – which shouldn’t be discounted just because he’s mistaken about the name of the new variant:

Even if you don’t want vaccination for yourself – for whatever reasons of your own, this is something you should be able to support in order to allow other people to have the choice that you’ve taken.

But here’s one thing:

Isn’t it sad that Mr Lewis has also to appeal to his own party leader, Keir Starmer, to do the right thing?

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.


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