Health

OECD Economic Outlook, Interim Report: Keeping the Recovery on Track

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (O.E.C.D.) published its Economic Outlook Interim Report stating that a global economic recovery from the pandemic was finally taking hold, but it inched back its forecast for worldwide economic growth and warned that the rebound was benefiting wealthier countries more than the developing world as vaccine distribution occurs at an uneven pace. Countries that have made big strides toward vaccinating most of their populations are bouncing back much more quickly than those that are still struggling to obtain shots, the O.E.C.D. said, raising a host of related economic problems that are affecting global supply chains and pose a risk for the future.

Laurence Boone, the organization’s chief economist: “If we continue to vaccinate and adapt better to living with the virus, supply will begin to normalize and this pressure will fade, but for that we have to vaccinate more people.”

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Trade secrecy and COVID-19

In this working paper, Innovation Council’s Mark Schultz and his colleagues analyse how trade secrets and other IPRs underpin innovation and manufacturing of Covid-19 Vaccines. They document that innovators already are sharing secrets and know-how widely with dozens of partners across the world to produce vaccine and therapeutic doses as quickly as possible. In several instances, they are working closely with their biggest competitors, thanks to the security provided by trade secrecy and other IP laws.

The authors conclude that forcing the disclosure of trade secrets would get in the way of manufacturing badly needed doses of Covid-19 vaccines by undermining voluntary arrangements and diverting resources from where they are needed most.

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IFPMA and Speak Up Africa announce winners of Africa Young Innovators for Health Award

Innovation Council member IFPMA announces the first-ever winners of the Africa Young Innovators for Health Award at the official virtual ceremony on Thursday, 16 September from 09:30 GMT online.

The three winners will be revealed live at the Award Ceremony, where health leaders, innovators, and entrepreneurs gather online to celebrate African innovation. And to highlight the vital role innovation plays, especially amongst young people in Africa, in tackling some of the most pressing healthcare challenges facing healthcare workers on the continent.

Read the full story and register here.

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Why trade secrets matter: Covid vaccine manufacturing scale-up and the WTO’s proposed IP waiver

Geneva Network is organising a discussion on the role of trade secrets in Covid-19 vaccine manufacturing. A panel of global experts, including Innovation Council’s own Mark Schultz, will shed light on how this important intellectual property right works, how it relates to vaccine manufacturing, and the implications of the IP waiver currently under discussion at the WTO.

The webinar will take place on September 14, 2021: 13.00 – 14.00 GMT.

Read the full story and register here.

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Waiving IP Rights: The Wrong Path to the Right Goals

Daniel J. Staudt, current President of the Intellectual Property Owners Association (IPO), explains in this article that waiving intellectual property (IP) protections for COVID-19 vaccines will hinder—rather than further—three meritorious objectives of the current U.S. Presidential Administration: ending the pandemic as soon as possible, levelling the IP playing field with China, and pursuing a worker-centric trade policy. In addition, a full and frank discussion of the real challenges at hand must take place, in order to support the continued efforts of vaccine manufacturers to identify—and engage with—new potential partners with whom they can create more manufacturing capacity. Only through such discussions can the challenges of globally distributing high-quality vaccines be truly addressed.

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Biotechnology applications poised for multi-sector growth across APAC

Biotechnology has fundamental applications across multiple sectors that are critical to the growth of economies around the Asia Pacific (APAC) region. The key factors driving this growth include favourable government initiatives, plummeting sequencing prices, growing market demand for synthetic biology, and increasing R&D investments by the public and private sectors. Asia Pacific’s biotech market is expected to expand even faster in the future, with a CAGR of 16.8% from now until 2028. This speed can be attributed to improvements in healthcare infrastructure, supportive government policies, clinical trial services, and epidemiological factors.

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Trade restrictions are delaying the COVID response. The WTO must act

Together with Thaddeus Burns, Innovation Council member Merck LF, Jennifer Brant has co-authored a paper on the delay in the COVID response caused by trade restrictions and explains why the WTO must act. The human costs of the pandemic, already dire, continue to mount. Vaccines against COVID have been developed at an unprecedented pace through a series of unprecedented partnerships. But this is not the end of the story; there is still an urgent need to expand vaccine protection worldwide, including through the expansion of biologic drug production capacity.

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Q&A with Innovation Council member Villgro Africa

Innovation Council sat down with Wilfred Njagi, Co-Founder and CEO of Villgro Africa to learn more about the success story and lessons learned. The healthcare business incubator has a demonstrated track record having incubated over 30 healthcare innovators in East Africa that have gone on to increase access to affordable, superior quality healthcare in E. Africa touching over 2 million lives in the last 5 years.

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Q&A with Innovation Council member Medixus

Innovation Council sat down with Nicole Kayode, Founder and CEO of Medixus to talk about her passion for health and social impact tech. She created a communication, collaboration and learning platform for doctors aimed at improving case management and clinical practice. Medixus believes that quality patient care relies on smooth communication between healthcare professionals, and access to resources that will further their development.

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