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Medicine Distribution

Volume 454: debated on Monday 11 December 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what steps his Department is taking to facilitate the charitable distribution of unused in-date medicines to developing countries. (105019)

DFID recognises that some organisations play a helpful role in seeking to improve health care in developing countries by donating medicines. However, donations do not provide a sustainable solution to the general, long-term needs for essential medicines in developing countries.

The UK Government believe that long term solutions must involve the development of sustainable markets for pharmaceutical products in developing countries. DFID provides support and finance to help developing countries purchase the drugs they need, benefit from lower prices through mechanisms such as UNITAID, increase the range of medicines available and strengthen the capacity of health services to deliver them.