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Recently, submitted public comments to the World Health Organization (WHO) regarding Online Access to Imported Medications.

Although the U.S. is not considered a low-income country, many Americans struggle to afford medications.

As states:

Online access to safe and affordable imported medicine can improve and even saves lives of those who can’t afford medicine where they live. This is particularly the case in the United States, where over 30 million people have no health insurance at all, and approximately 87 million are not adequately insured (Commonwealth Fund, 2019).

As part of this public comment period, twelve multilateral global health and development organizations are seeking public comments to help develop their “Global Action Plan for Healthy Lives and Well-being for All.” goes on to state:

“…the Internet, via international online pharmacies, has helped tens of millions of Americans obtain medicines from pharmacies in other countries. In many of those cases, patients would otherwise not be able to obtain a prescribed medicine because price often determines access. In recognizing that price is an obstacle to access to medicines, Global Health Organizations can play a more constructive, forward-thinking role by promoting an open Internet through which regulated medicines can be purchased across borders both safely and at lower cost.”

They also highlight the fact that the WHO has recognized previously the potential benefits of online pharmacies yet have not yet states the benefits of medicine affordability and access through prescription importation.

The human rights framework to promote online access to safe and affordable medicine can be found here: Brussels Principles on the Sale of Medicines over the Internet.

More information on the Public Comment from can be found here.

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