Case Study: Expanding Availability of Healthcare Services

Bristol-Myers Squibb Agreement with Medicines Patent Pool to Increase Access to Atazanavir, Bristol-Myers Squibb


The Medicines Patent Pool (MPP) and Bristol-Myers Squibb signed a licensing agreement to increase access to a key HIV medicine, atazanavir, in 110 developing countries. There are approximately 29 million people living with HIV/AIDS in the 110 low- and middle-income countries included in the territory of the agreement.

Under the terms of the agreement, a technology transfer package will be provided to sublicensees to facilitate the manufacture of atazanavir. Manufacturers will also be able to combine it with other medicines to make treatment easier and more accessible in developing countries. While royalties are not applicable in the vast majority of these countries and are waived for all pediatric products, any royalties collected under this license agreement will be reinvested in local HIV/AIDS groups.

Lessons Learned?

Our agreement with the MPP complements our existing Global HIV Access Program that helps provide access to our HIV medicines in a broad range of resource-limited countries throughout the world. Among the lessons learned through the evolution of our access initiatives is the importance of ensuring that such agreements cover all relevant strengths and formulations, in order to share their benefits with all patients, including pediatric ones, in a particular region. Since the agreement was approved in December 2013, more insights will undoubtedly be identified over the coming years.

Results to Date?

We recognize that entering into an agreement is only one step in enabling access to atazanavir to more patients. With this thought in mind, we are working closely with the MPP to implement the agreement. Together, we have agreed on time-bound goals to ensure access to all approved strengths and formulations in a reasonable time frame. The MPP tracks sublicense agreements for medicines and provides updates at