Boehringer Ingelheim increases access to the medication for the treatment of HIV/AIDS

Boehringer IngelheimBoehringer Ingelheim is announcing an expansion of its Intellectual Property (IP) enforcement policy. The IP enforcement policy had already been amended in 2007 by an easy-to-use, non-assert declaration for Viramune® (nevirapine). At present, twelve WHO pre-qualified manufacturers qualify for the non-assert declaration for Viramune® and Boehringer Ingelheim grants tiered pricing to 78 countries.

Under the revised IP enforcement policy, Boehringer Ingelheim will not enforce its nevirapine patent rights, provided generic versions of Viramune® are of acceptable quality and for use in eligible countries. Today's expanded IP enforcement policy will further increase access to HIV/Aids medication in emerging economies.

The decision to waive enforcement of its patent rights for nevirapine use in a total of 135 low- and middle-income countries is the result of a close cooperation between Boehringer Ingelheim and the Medicines Patent Pool (MPP). The United Nations-backed public health organisation MPP works to improve access to HIV, Hepatitis C and tuberculosis medicines in low- and middle-income countries.

"The core task of Boehringer Ingelheim is the research and development of innovative medication. We feel responsible for making innovative medicines like nevirapine accessible and affordable for patients in developing countries," explains Yew Looi Liew, Senior Vice President Emerging Markets at Boehringer Ingelheim. "Through making these medicines available we address an unmet medical need and can save lives - especially in low-income societies."

The research-driven company Boehringer Ingelheim has a significant history in the commitment of improving access to its anti-retroviral medication. The Viramune® Donation Programme was initiated in 2000 in order to facilitating access of anti-retroviral drugs for pregnant women with HIV/Aids. From its inception, the initiative reached more than two million mother-child-pairs in 164 programmes in 60 countries worldwide.

The Medicines Patent Pool (MPP) seeks to increase access to medicines by negotiating with pharmaceutical companies for voluntary licenses on their medicines patents. The work of the MPP has been endorsed by the World Health Organization, UNAIDS, The Global Fund to Fight Aids, Tuberculosis and Malaria, and the Group of Eight (G8) Industrialised Nations (France, Germany, Italy, United Kingdom, Japan, United States, Canada and Russia). The MPP was founded and continues to be funded by the innovative financing mechanism UNITAID.

About Boehringer Ingelheim
Boehringer Ingelheim is one of the world's 20 leading pharmaceutical companies. Headquartered in Ingelheim, Germany, Boehringer Ingelheim operates globally through 145 affiliates and a total of some 47,500 employees. The focus of the family-owned company, founded in 1885, is on researching, developing, manufacturing and marketing new medications of high therapeutic value for human and veterinary medicine.

Social responsibility is an important element of the corporate culture at Boehringer Ingelheim. This includes worldwide involvement in social projects through, for example, the initiative "Making More Health" while also caring for employees. Respect, equal opportunity and reconciling career and family form the foundation of mutual cooperation. The company also focuses on environmental protection and sustainability in everything it does.

In 2015, Boehringer Ingelheim achieved net sales of about 14.8 billion euros. R&D expenditure corresponds to 20.3 per cent ofnet sales.

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