|Essential Drugs Used in the Care of People Living with HIV: Sources and Prices (UNAIDS, 1999, 4 p.)|
Treatment for HIV-related conditions is limited in developing countries. Explanations include limitations in their diagnosis and treatment infrastructure, lack of epidemiological data on the patterns of opportunistic diseases that is necessary to plan treatment interventions, gaps in their supply system, and the high cost and poor ability to finance the purchase of drugs. To improve access to drugs used HIV-related conditions, the WHO Expert Committee on the Use of Essential Drugs included in the tenth Model List of Essential Drugs a number of drugs used to treat opportunistic infections of special importance in HIV/AIDS. However, most of them were not included in the range of products distributed by international generics suppliers, and access to them remained limited in developing countries.
To find supply solutions for those drugs UNAIDS, UNICEF and WHO initiated a joint project that specifically sought to identify suppliers and supply-related information for them. The outcome of this project has been a database containing information relevant to drug procurement that could be used by countries and donors to improve access to HIV-related drugs. The project did not intend to assess and pre-qualify suppliers: procurement agencies should follow their own procedures in this respect. Preliminary project outputs are presented in Tables 1 and 2.