Pharmaceutical companies and access to medicines – social integration and ethical CSR resolution of a global public choice problem

Journal of Global Ethics 8 (2-3):139-167 (2012)
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Abstract

This article argues that effective corporate social responsibility (CSR) of multinational pharmaceutical companies in developing countries should reflect context, opportunity, proximity, time and impact in accordance with the social integration and ethical approaches to CSR. It proposes a CSR model expressed as CSR=COPTI+SI+E, which acknowledges access-to-medicines as a matter in the global public domain, a public choice problem and a moral responsibility issue for multinational pharmaceutical companies. This model recognises the globalisation of the principle of humanity in communities of place and communities of interest as highlighted by the Global Economic Ethic Manifesto 2009 as an integral part of the responsibilities of multinational pharmaceutical companies. The model reflects a global application of the concept of disadvantaged consumer already known to some national laws. The article suggests an access-to-medicines CSR framework for pharmaceutical companies which may include pricing, patents, testing and clinical trials, research and development, joint public private initiative and appropriate use of drugs

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