Union applauds the price reduction announced for bedaquiline for the treatment of drug-resistant TB in low- and middle-income countries

Union applauds the price reduction announced for bedaquiline for the treatment of drug-resistant TB in low- and middle-income countries

The Union welcomes the announcement made on Monday that bedaquiline will be made available to Stop TB Partnership’s Global Drug Facility (GDF) at a price of USD$340 per six-month treatment course for more than 135 eligible low- and middle-income countries.

In addition to making bedaquiline available to GDF at the reduced price, Johnson & Johnson will also provide an escalating percentage of free goods when certain volume thresholds are reached on an annual basis. Based on these thresholds, and the fact that the Stop TB Partnership expects to receive confirmed orders for at least 125,000 people with drug-resistant tuberculosis (DR-TB) in 2020, the organisation expects to receive two treatments for free out of every 10 ordered. In total this equates to an effective net price reduction in the cost of bedaquiline by 32 percent, compared to the original USD$400 price.

The announcement, made by the Stop TB Partnership and Johnson & Johnson – with support from the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria (Global Fund), and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) – was made to help enable low- and middle-income countries to rapidly scale up use of bedaquiline in support of World Health Organization (WHO) treatment guidelines. The WHO guidelines, issued last month, included two new recommendations for the treatment of DR-TB, one on the composition of shorter regimens and one on the use of the BPaL regimen (i.e. bedaquiline, pretomanid and linezolid).

Ingrid Schoeman, Chair of The Union Community Advisory Panel commented on the news: “I look up to all the activists and drug-resistant TB survivors like Phumeza and Nandita, both of whom attended the Union World Conference on Lung Health. They use their voices to increase access to bedaquiline and to change so many people's lives for the better.  The Union celebrates this stride made by Stop TB Partnership, Johnson & Johnson, the Global Fund and USAID towards person-centred high-quality TB care for all. Thank you.”

Phumeza Tisile, TB survivor and advocate from South Africa said: “Our voices and time do not go out in vain. We have the power to change whatever we see when it’s not working, and we unite to see such change. Congratulations to fellow activists and advocacy groups that were part of this change. One step forward.”

The press release can be downloaded here: Stop TB Partnership and Johnson & Johnson, with support from USAID and The Global Fund, Announce Price Reduction for SIRTURO® (bedaquiline) for Treatment of Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis in Low- and Middle-Income Countries.

Photo shows Phumeza Tisile, TB survivor and advocate from South Africa. Photo credit: Steve Forrest / The Union 

News