India's Ranbaxy Laboratories and Aurobinda Pharma were among some of the world's leading pharmaceutical and diagnostic companies applauded by UN Secretary General Kofi Annan for their commitment to expand access to HIV/AIDS treatment and prevention.
Annan complimented these companies for their efforts in the field of HIV/AIDS treatment and prevention after a meeting with their top executives at United Nations Headquarters yesterday.
Beside Ranbaxy and Aurobinda Pharma, the participating companies included Aspen Pharmacare, Becton Dickinson, Bristol-Myers Squibb, GlaxoSmithKline, Hetero Drugs, Johnson & Johnson and Merck & Company.
"I am pleased that the companies I met today pledged to continue their efforts, in line with international commitments towards the goal of being as close as possible to universal access by 2010," Annan said.
Despite the significant advances in the five years since he first met with pharmaceutical company executives, Annan said the AIDS epidemic is "still outpacing our efforts and we need to work together in a broad partnership to step up the response." In that light, he said that the companies have committed individually to continue to review their product offerings and the prices of their existing and new HIV medications and diagnostics, especially for children, to make them more affordable, accessible and appropriate for use in low-and middle-income countries.