Removing the Roadblocks in Equitable Global Access to COVID-19 Vaccine through IPR Waiver

Dahiya, Saurabh ; Sharma, Chanchal ; Goyal, Yachika

Abstract

In October 2020, South Africa and India proposed a plan to protect developing nations' interests and ensure a seamless supply of COVID-19 vaccinations. While rich countries have made rapid progress with their immunization programmes, many poor and underdeveloped countries have been left behind to fend for themselves due to patent protection. With the frightening rate at which COVID-19 cases have been emerging, the global population requires immediate and equitable access to life-saving vaccines. In this paper a methodological systematic review of IPR waiver related journal papers and newsletters published from 2019-2021 was performed. Search was conducted through significant scientific databases for relevant publications for this systematic review. This paper discusses to waive IPR in the COVID-19 pandemic, which has received both criticism and praise. Some opponents oppose the IPR waiver because it eliminates rewards for pharmaceutical corporations' R & D efforts. Vaccine development necessitates specialized requirements which cost a lot of money. Along with this, pharmaceutical corporations will be hesitant to take the lead in the future if a situation similar to COVID-19 arises. However, those in favour believe that an IPR waiver can reduce the barriers to countries producing their own vaccines, particularly for the lowest-income nations. Whether the reasoning is correct or incorrect, the timely & equitable distribution of COVID-19 immunizations is critical to the abolition of this pandemic.

Keyword(s)

COVID-19; TRIPS; Vaccines Patent; Relaxation; WTO; Waiver; Emergency Use Authorizations

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