Trump wants even worse medicine rules

20 February 2017: US President Trump says countries like Australia are “freeloading” because our government regulates medicine prices through the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS).

The PBS is a vital part of Australia’s health system because it helps to ensure lifesaving medicines are affordable and accessible.

At a meeting with pharmaceutical companies in January, Mr Trump said:

"Our trade policy will prioritize that foreign countries pay their fair share for U.S.-manufactured drug, so our drug companies have greater financial resources to accelerate development of new cures, and I think that's so important.

"Right now it's very unfair what other countries are doing to us.”

These comments show us that while Trump did withdraw from the TPP, it wasn’t because it extended medicine monopolies and delayed access to cheaper medicines.

We are yet to see Trump’s trade policy in action, but we will need to be vigilant to ensure that he doesn’t try to reduce access to affordable medicines. 

Make sure you stay informed: if you’re not already an AFTINET subscriber, you can sign up here for the latest news.