ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Designs of Healthcare Trade

This paper analyses the impact of information technology on cost, efficiency and equity as drivers of cross-border trade and investments in healthcare. But there is still need for more research on how IT affects costs of diagnosis and treatment with regard to specific disease burdens to resolve tensions between efficiency and equity as internationally agreed conventions such as TRIPS, CBD and BWC do not apply in equal measure in all WTO national jurisdictions. The persistence of unresolved conflicts of rights and conflicts of interests point to the need for new international arrangements to be mandated and resourced yet the extent to which this can be achieved is uncertain.

Who Owns Traditional Knowledge?

The protection of traditional knowledge is one of the major issues addressed in WTO negotiations. The question assumes significance because traditional knowledge consists of information in the public domain as well as trade secrets; novelty thresholds of patent laws of countries differ greatly and are notoriously low in countries where the pharmaceutical industry is strongest; and, patentability under TRIPS does not require prior informed consent of countries or communities from where organic and informational resources are procured.

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