Stiglitz on IP

Joseph Stiglitz, Nobel prize winner in economics, lets loose on our system of intellectual property protection of medical treatments. There is nothing new in the argument — patent monopolies might stimulate research but this could be on marginal efforts, existing treatments and create a by-product of monopoly promotion through advertising. The person saying it gives it weight this time around. Stiglitz argues for a complementary system of prizes as a better way than patents to stimulate research.

I have said it before but government procurement of medical treatments is another way of having our cake and eating it too and the Australian PBS is a prime example (click here for a review).

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