Indian Government has refused to grant product patent for Glivec, the cancer drug from Novartis AG, the Swiss pharma giant. As a result Novartis may not be able to conduct their drug research here in India. Singapore and China are the countries where Novartis conducts its research now.
While talking on this issue, Paul Herrling, who heads Corporate Research division of Novartis reveals that this decision by the Indian government could hamper the launch of their patented products. But this in any way will not affect the distribution of Glivec here. According to him, Novartis through its foundation has been distributing Glivec to needy patients to the tune of 1270 crore in India.
Trade analysts opine that if such drugs are not available freely in the market and are being prescribed by the physicians and supplied by a few pharmacies, it would prove to be very expensive to the patients.
Herrling feels that the primary objective of any drug company should be to improve health care services. They should focus their research on this area. Product patent alone is not sufficient but data individuality is more important.