Fearing sanction, Thais may pay for drugs

Thailand may be running scared. Remember, the new health minister promised last week to review the country's compulsory licenses--which essentially break patent rules so that cheap meds can be had during health emergencies. Now, Chaiya Sasomsa says he'd rather buy the expensive cancer drugs his predecessor co-opted, because the alternative may be trade sanctions.

The World Trade Organization allows compulsory licenses if public health demands it. But apparently, Thailand officials are worried that the policy could undermine relations with trading partners. The U.S. Trade Rep, for one, put Thailand on its Priority Watch list because of the patent-breaking.

- read the item at Pharmalot