After hearing about the lack of research surronding the Ebola virus due to the fact that countries with a prevalence of Ebola do not usually have a market for purchasing vaccines and drugs, I was reminded of the hot topic of TRIPs. TRIPs (Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property) is an international agreement that was put forth by the World Trade Organization. This agreement sets up international standards of protection for intellectual property through copyrights and patents. While seemingly an effective plan at protecting the incentives and ideas of people worldwide, it has unfortunate effects on drug availability in developing countries. TRIPs enforces patents for 20 years on all fields of technology, preventing companies in developing countries from producing generic, more afforable, versions of new drugs. While adaptations have been made on this agreement, many argue that TRIPs continues to maintain higher drug costs across Africa (specifically creating consequences for AIDS).
For more about TRIPs: CLICK HERE