First, if medicines are made available to those who cannot afford them, this is a promotion of fundamental human rights. Specifically, this will help promote the access to health. Pharmaceutical companies have unique human rights responsibilities and this requires that they include the aspect of human rights in their operations (Nwobike, 2006). This industry has a human rights obligation of protecting the right to health to all. This then obligates them to make such drugs available to those who need them even if they may not be able to afford them. This is particularly the case when epidemics such as AIDS are considered. Pharmaceutical corporations should thus put mechanisms in place to ensure that a certain percentage of their profits are directed towards proving free medications to the poor. Just like many other corporations, the pharmaceutical industry has a big influence in promoting human rights, and providing free medications is one of the strategies that can be used to achieve this. Opponents of this view have argued that pharmaceutical companies are like any other corporations and hence should not be treated differently. It is argued that compelling them to provide free medicines would mean that they are treated unfairly. However, it is clear that their violations of human rights are manifested differently and are usually instant (Nwobike, 2006). In many cases, a patient who fails to receive the necessary medication ends up dying, or suffering permanent complications that affect their lives. This demands that in view of the human rights aspect, the pharmaceutical industry needs to be treated differently. Agencies charged with the responsibility of promoting human health, such as the World Health Organization (WHO), should play develop principles and frameworks that will help the pharmaceutical industry provide free medications to those who ...
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