MPDD Seminar Series on "The Health Impact Fund: Enhancing Innovation and Access for Pharmaceuticals" by Professor Aidan Hollis
The Health Impact Fund (HIF) is a new way of stimulating research and development of life-saving pharmaceuticals. To provide wide access to the most effective pharmaceuticals, prices need to be low enough for people to afford – but low prices don’t create strong incentives for innovators to invest in research and development. The proposed HIF is an optional mechanism that offers pharmaceutical innovators a supplementary reward based on the health impact of their products, if they agree to sell those products at designated low prices. The HIF would be financed mainly by governments. The WHO's Expert Working Group on R&D Financing recently recognized the HIF as one of only 5 "promising" proposals out of the 90 they reviewed, and it has attracted increasing support. This seminar will present the HIF proposal with a particular view to its implications for Asia, including its applications to traditional medicines, and consider how the proposal can be piloted with a view to its ultimate implementation.
Delivering this lecture was Aidan Hollis, Professor of Economics at the University of Calgary and Vice-President and a Director of Incentives for Global Health, the US-based NGO established to lead the development of the Health Impact Fund. In 2003-4, he served as T.D. MacDonald Chair in Industrial Economics at the Competition Bureau, Ottawa. His research focuses on incentives and competition in pharmaceutical markets and he has published extensively in these topics, as well as in other areas of economics. He is the author with Thomas Pogge of the 2008 book The Health Impact Fund: Making Medicines Accessible for All.