Patent nonsense of big pharma costs lives | Letter: Tony Greenstein

I was one of 500 people who benefited from the £18.7m government funding for Sofosbuvir (NHS delays $ 1,000-a-pill drug to treat hepatitis C, 16 January). If I hadn’t been treated I would be dead today. The decision of Nice to allow NHS England to postpone Sofosbuvir’s introduction will condemn many patients to death.

There is an alternative, as India has demonstrated, which is to refuse the manufacturers, Gilead Sciences, a patent. In India Gilead has now agreed to the production of a generic version of the drug. The cost of producing Sofosbuvir for a three-month course is $ 101 – $ 1 a pill.

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