Fix The Patent Laws

Patents Must Serve the Public Interest

By Marcus Low, Treatment Action Campaign Thousands of people in South Africa have drug-resistant tuberculosis (TB). Many of them will die slow, horrible deaths. Many of those who live will struggle with severe side effects during the up to two years of daily pills and injections. Some, like 23-year old Phumeza who spoke at our […]

South Africa: Stop Blindly Handing Out Patents!

Health activists hand-over comments on Draft Policy to Dept. of Trade & Industry, supporting patent law reform PRETORIA, 17 October – Marching in support of government-proposed patent law reforms, Doctors Without Borders (MSF), the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC), and SECTION27 today handed their submission commenting on the Draft National Policy on Intellectual Property, 2013 to […]

Over 130 international organisations & experts demand patent law reform in South Africa!

Over 130 organisations and experts globally have called on the South African Department of Trade and Industry to Fix the Patent Law in an open letter delivered this morning. You can find a PDF of the open letter here. The Fix the Patent Law campaign thanks all signatories for their support for improving access to […]

TAC debunks pharma’s myths around patent law reform

As the Fix the Patent Laws campaign gains traction and South Africa moves closer towards the kind of intellectual property reform that will vastly improve access to affordable medicines, a number of claims are being publicised by the pharmaceutical industry and their allies seeking to protect their business interests. The purpose of this myth-buster is […]

Brazil and South Africa agree: it’s time to Fix the Patent Laws

South African delegation to Brazil get vital opportunity to learn from counterparts as South Africa patent reform process gathers pace                           October 9th 2013: Doctors Without Borders (MSF) and the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC) congratulate the Brazilian government on taking bold steps to […]

The IP Debate – Let’s not be fooled…

By Professor Yousuf Vawda, School of Law, University of KwaZulu-Natal Those opposed to the introduction of substantive patent examination in South Africa (and increased IP protection over medicines and other innovations) base their arguments on flawed assumptions:   1. ‘It is highly unlikely that patent applications which have been granted in developed countries would be refused […]

DTI’s draft IP policy lays foundation to prevent abusive patenting

Health groups call for wide public consultation  Johannesburg, 9 September – The Treatment Action Campaign (TAC), Doctors Without Borders (MSF) and SECTION27 welcome the announcement that the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has called for public comment on the long-overdue draft National Policy on Intellectual Property (IP). The DTI has taken heed of  calls […]

TAC welcomes the approval of dolutegravir in the US and calls for action to ensure global access

The Treatment Action Campaign (TAC) welcomes the approval by the US Food and Drug Administration of the antiretroviral medicine dolutegravir. This is a new integrase inhibitor (brand name Tivicay) that could potentially become a vital drug in the global struggle against HIV. TAC calls on all parties involved to ensure widespread availability of Dolutegravir in […]

TAC & MSF Memorandum to DTI to urgently Fix the Patent Laws

This is a memorandum dated 7th August delivered to representatives from the Department for Trade and Industry, including Minister Rob Davies, ahead of a workshop in coordination with the WTO, WHO, WIPO calling on the DTI to urgently “Fix the Patent Laws” to improve South Africans’ access to medicines. You can access the original memorandum here. The […]

TAC open letter to USTR regarding concerns with US pressure to restrict India’s generic medicine industry

This is an open letter dated 23rd July from the Treatment Action Campaign sent to USTR Ambassador Michael Froman outlining our concerns with mounting US pressure aiming to restrict India’s generic medicines industry. You can find the original letter here.   Dear Ambassador Froman, The Treatment Action Campaign (TAC) of South Africa is extremely concerned […]

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  • About the Campaign

    fix the patent laws
    Fix the Patent Laws is a campaign co-founded by SECTION27, Treatment Action Campaign (TAC) and Doctors Without Borders (MSF) in 2011. Since then, the coalition has grown to include 38 other organisations fighting together to push South Africa to amend its patent laws to prioritise public health. Through this blog we will highlight how amending South Africa’s Patents Act 57 of 1978 will reduce the cost of medicines, improving the health and saving the lives of millions of South Africans.

    The members of the Fix the Patent Laws Campaign are as follows: Treatment Action Campaign (TAC), Doctors Without Borders (MSF), SECTION27, the South African Non-Communicable Diseases Alliance (SANCD Alliance), DiabetesSA, EpilepsySA, Marie Stopes South Africa, Stop Stock Outs Project (SSP), South African Depression and Anxiety Group (SADAG), Cape Mental Health (CMH), the South African Federation of Mental Health (SAFMH), Schizophrenia and Bipolar Disorders Alliance (SABDA), as well as the following members of the Cancer Alliance and Advocates for Breast Cancer: Breast Course 4 Nurses, Breast Health Foundation, Cancer Association of South Africa (CANSA), Cancer Heroes, Can-Sir, CanSurvive, Care for Cancer Foundation, Childhood Cancer Foundation of South Africa (CHOC), Hospice Palliative Care Association (HPCA), Igazi Foundation, Look Good Feel Better, Love your Nuts, Lymphoedema Association of South Africa (LAOSA), Men’s Foundation, National Council Against Smoking, National Oncology Nursing Association of SA, Pancreatic Cancer Network of SA (PanCan), People Living With Cancer (PLWC), Pink Trees for Pauline, Pink Phoenix Cancer Foundation, Pocket Cancer Support, Project Flamingo, Rainbows and Smiles, Reach for Recovery, South African Oncology Social Work Forum (SAOSWF), The Pink Parasol Project, The Sunflower Fund, Vrede Foundation and Wings of Hope.

  • Read the TAC and MSF campaign pamphlet

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