28 November 2008

Patently Outrageous

Drug companies are blocking or delaying the entry of cheaper generic medicines into the EU, pushing up medicine bills, the European Commission has said.

Their actions cost EU healthcare providers 3bn euros ($3.9bn; £2.5bn) in savings between 2000 and 2007, it said.

But how were they doing that?

Drug firms use "perfectly lawful practices - such as patent portfolios, patent litigation and the release of improved medicines," the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA) said.

Ahh, *that's* what patents are for, then....

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