Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Pharmac Under Attack by Pharmaceutical Industry


30 September

Pharmac Under Attack by Pharmaceutical Industry

The New Zealand Nurses Organisation (NZNO) rejects the pharmaceutical industry’s contention that Pharmac will not be affected by the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) currently being negotiated between eleven Asian and Pacific-rim countries including the United States and New Zealand.

Kevin Sheehy, general manager of Medicines New Zealand, dismissed analysis by visiting public health and trade expert Dr Deborah Gleeson that showed there is much in the TPPA that undermines the effectiveness of Pharmac.

Geoff Annals, NZNO chief executive commented on Sheehy’s dismissal saying; “It is not surprising to see the pharmaceutical industry rejecting concerns the TPPA will reduce the effectiveness of Pharmac because Pharmac is very successful in doing what it was set up to do: making medicines more affordable. Pharmac is the national medicines purchasing agency that has achieved the greatest success anywhere in the world in balancing the health interests of people and communities against the business interests of big medicines companies. Pharmac is under attack by the pharmaceutical industry because it is successful and the ‘Pharmac model’ is being adopted by other countries needing a better balance between business and health interests.”

In response to the industry argument that Pharmac will be improved by being forced to operate more transparently under the TPPA, Annals said that; “If Pharmac needs more transparency why attempt to force this through secret trade negotiations? Whose interests are being served? NZNO is concerned that US pharmaceutical interests are attempting to use the TPPA as a tool to undermine the effectiveness of Pharmac at serving the interests of New Zealanders.”

“Pharmac purchases medicines for New Zealanders at prices around half those achieved by Australia’s medicines purchasing agency and around a third the price demanded in the US. Yes, this is painful to the medicines industry but it enables New Zealand to afford better health services than otherwise. Analysis by Dr Gleeson and other experts of leaked drafts of the TPPA expose provisions designed to force up the price New Zealanders pay for medicines by attacking the mechanisms that make Pharmac effective.”

Annals concluded by commenting that; “Assurances that Pharmac will be preserved under the TPPA are empty when it is apparent the Pharmac envisaged is a Pharmac redesigned by US pharmaceutical firms to serve their interests not ours.”


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines



Relevant Consents Gained: Government Unveils RMA Reform Package

The government has formally hauled down the flag on its attempts to alter the balance of environmental and economic priorities in the Resource Management Act, unveiling a 180-page Resource Legislation Amendment Bill containing reforms that have been largely endorsed by most political parties. More>>


Closing Schools And Such: Interim Redcliffs Decision Announced

“While the school’s board has argued that circumstances that could give rise to potential disruption are extremely unlikely, advice from technical experts has shown these concerns cannot be ruled out." More>>


Jane Kelsey: High Court Can’t Make Groser Provide TPPA Information Faster

‘This week we went back to court to challenge Trade Minister Groser’s stalling tactics over the release of information on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement negotiations, following a High Court order that he reconsider the Official Information Act request I made last January’, said University of Auckland law professor Jane Kelsey, first applicant in the case. More>>

Werewolf 58: No Climate For Change

The last time the global community tried to take collective action on climate change the world’s leaders finally came to agree that every not-too-onerous effort should be made to hold global warming to 2°C above the pre-industrial average. At Paris, all 150 participant countries nations will have put forward their pledges... On the information available, New Zealand's is the second weakest contribution of any nation in the developed world. More>>


Lambton Quay Shutdown: Object Was Made To Look Like Bomb

Police cordoned off part of Lambton Quay Wednesday afternoon, saying that a suspicious package had been found. Buildings were evacuated and buses were detoured. The army’s explosive ordnance disposal unit was brought to the Quay. More>>


Public Sector Still Shrinking: Record Low Number Of 'Backroom Bureaucrats'

Ongoing restraint in the public sector and a focus on better frontline services has seen a further reduction in the number of core Government employees, State Services Minister Paula Bennett says. More>>


Disobeying The Law: Police Censorship Of Crime Research “An Outrage”

The Green Party is calling on Police Minister Michael Woodhouse to ensure Police scrap controversial contracts that place onerous restrictions on academic researchers’ access to Police data, the Green Party says. More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news