Statement of Robert Weissman, President, Public Citizen
Note: Public Citizen and 70 civil society organizations today called on President Donald Trump to not grant monopolies on any coronavirus vaccines or treatments developed with government support, and for his administration to require reasonable pricing globally through clear conditions in all coronavirus government contracts. Public Citizen released a report which found that taxpayers have spent nearly $700 million on coronavirus research and development since 2002.
We the People have driven coronavirus research and development – not pharma corporations.
Congress has taken notice that we can’t let pharma price gouging threaten the coronavirus response, but now the country needs President Trump to act.
Americans will not accept Trump giving Big Pharma corporations monopolies or letting pharma corporations profiteer off a potential pandemic that claims lives daily.
Trump must commit to nonexclusive licensing of whatever vaccine is developed – so that it is available to any manufacturer that can produce a quality product – and insist all manufacturers commit to reasonable pricing.
Granting exclusive deals to pharmaceutical corporations to charge as much as they want on publicly funded vaccines and treatments does not only threaten our response. It also would undermine public health around the world.