Ethical Justification For Providing Life Saving Medicines

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The ethical justification for providing life-saving medicines to poor developing nations in need of them is easily justifiable. However, distributing these drugs throughout the world at cost-effective prices, while still making profit is the ethical dilemmas that pharmaceutical companies face. Many countries urge pharmaceutical companies to set priorities for the common good of the people, instead of just the citizens who can gain access or afford expensive treatments. The companies also have a duty to the shareholders of the company, especially in recouping the money that has been spent on the research. If a company does patent its HIV/AIDS drug then they protect it from being common knowledge and avoid losing an edge over other…show more content…
Pharmaceutical companies spend millions to billions of dollars designing, developing and protecting their properties. They deserve to reap the benefits of their work, but at what cost? Certain circumstances should circumvent the patents protecting these life-altering drugs. There are millions of opinions on the subject, seen by the shear girth of the literature on the subject, but it is imperative that lives do not continue to be measured in dollar signs. The balance must be designed as to protect all parties in difficult situations like the HIV/AIDS epidemic. The battle is not always the disease versus humans, but sometimes humans versus humans.
The answers to the questions above are much easier said than done. The majority of the people with HIV/AIDS live in sub-Saharan Africa (Figure 1) (13). As of 2013, 39 million people have died since this disease was brought to light in the early 1980s (13). Even though this disease has been at the forefront of research for decades, scientific advances in the field have been slow to come about. There is no cure for the disease; however new antiretroviral treatments have allowed the virus replication to be controlled at a more manageable level (8). There have been concentrated global efforts to spread these drugs through the crisis areas of the disease, but efforts have not always been successful.
Unfortunately, HIV/AIDS has crippled the
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