Le directeur de l’OMPI se pose des questions sur ce qu’il faut faire avec les progrès médicaux pour contrer le COVID-19. Un relâchement des règles de propriété intellectuelle est à l’étude.
C’est un pas important pour ré-équilibrer la « hiérarchie des normes », en plaçant le droit à la santé et les droits humains devant les brevets de médicaments.
Il reste à espérer que ce qui va sortir des décisions sera à la hauteur.
Dans tous les cas, n’oublions pas que les Etats peuvent bloquer un brevet pour des raisons d’urgence nationale... Si un médicament contre le COVID-19 devait être breveté, cela serait un sous-produit de la démission politique des États... inimaginable en temps de cirse, n’est-ce pas ?
Director Gurry Responds II: Considering Patent Sharing Tools
The day after his public address, Director Gurry took questions from several members of the press. There he expounded on the issue of IP and health technology at some length, and released that he would be publishing a statement on the topic this week.
On the press briefing, a reporter asked whether a recent compulsory license by Israel for COVID-19 medicines indicated “any risk of serious conflict growing” and “for the integrity of the patent market.” Gurry explained:
“This is a hot issue and a very sensitive issue. I would say that starting point should be – we are in a profound crisis that is causing widespread suffering. There is a unanimous approach to reduce the suffering occurring. It is an extraordinary situation. The international framework does envision flexibilities to deal with health emergencies.”
Gurry stated a desire that countries efforts be “targeted,” “that they deal with real needs and shortages.” He confirmed that this is what he was seeing in country responses thus far. “So far that is what we are seeing – targeted actions to people that need them.”
Director Gurry appeared dismissive of more fundamental critiques of the IP “system” and expressed concern that some actions could derogate form the rights of artists and musicians. “I hope it is not a general blah blah about the intellectual property system,” he remarked.
“We have an economy dependent on innovation. We have a society that is dependent more or less on the vitality of cultural products. We have to ensure as a secondary consideration (primacy is health and safety) that the actions we take are not just to derogate, for example in the creative industries — the actors and others who are unemployed.”
Director Gurry stated his desire to “ensure that measures are time bound, targeted, . . . Whether that translates into a completely different system, I doubt it.”
Gurry answered favorably to a follow up question on whether he envisioned “that WIPO will advance some special mechanism to share drug patents?” He described the difficulties of reaching negotiated multilateral solutions and stated that “non-legislative practical measures are a great way forward. We are in discussion with various parties to see what could be done in this regard.”
Director Gurry included in his response that he actively considering a policy statement on the issue. “I will address this [issue of IP and health technology] in a communication toward the end of this week. It is a work in progress. I will say more about it at that stage.”