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Trading Away Access to Medicines: How the European Union’s trade agenda has taken a wrong turn

Access to medicines poses a critical challenge in developing countries, largely because prices are high, and new or adapted medicines and vaccine to address diseases of the developing world are lacking. ore than 5 million people in low and middle income countries still lack access to the anti-retroviral medicines needed to treat HIV and AIDS. Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) have unleashed a new epidemic of suffering across the developing world. Pandemics are a serious threat in rich and poor countries alike, but while rich countries can stockpile medicines, these are often unaffordable for poor countries. Most people in developing countries pay for medicines out-of-pocket, so even a slight price increase can mean that life-saving medicines are unaffordable.