Affordable antiretroviral drugs for middle-income countries

Antiretroviral medication can greatly extend the life expectancies of people living with HIV (Image: John Rae/The Global Fund)

Making HIV treatment affordable in middle-income countries.


Many initiatives that increase access to medicines are only available to lower-income countries. Some middle-income countries pay excessively high prices for antiretroviral medicines because they are excluded from these initiatives. Unmerited patents also contribute to the problem.


The project aims to enable generic competition by removing patent barriers in four middle-income countries: Argentina, Brazil, Thailand and Ukraine. It does so by challenging low quality, secondary patents and advocating for the selective use of compulsory licenses.

Progress so far

The Make Medicines Affordable campaign is working to bring down the price of antiretroviral drugs so that people living with HIV in middle-income countries have access to treatment. Since the beginning of the project, consortium members have filed six pre-grant oppositions to patents for antiretroviral drugs across the four focus countries.

The project has already contributed to price reductions for antiretroviral drugs that have resulted in savings of up to US $38 million per year in Argentina and up to US $61 million per year in Thailand.

The impact we are seeking

The project aims to generate significant savings for Argentina, Thailand, Brazil and Ukraine through more affordable antiretroviral drugs.

Increased access to more affordable generic antiretroviral medicines could potentially save up to US $150 million per year in the four countries, which could be used to treat an additional 130,000 patients.

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