Court of Administrative Justice to Issue Decision on Lawsuit Challenging Medicine Price Increases on April 27

Press Release

23 February 2010

The Cairo Court of Administrative Justice adjourned today's session examining the lawsuit filed by the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR) against the new drug-pricing regime until 27 April 2010, when it is due to issue a decision on the suspension of the decree. Lawsuit 2457/64 asks for a temporary stay of Minister of Health Decree 373/2009 establishing the new pricing regime as a prelude to its total abolition.

At today’s hearing, Adel Ramadan, EIPR’s Legal Officer submitted a memo and presented an oral statement; lawyers for the Ministry of Health requested a continuance to offer further defense pleadings, but Judge Adel Farghali, the head of the first circuit, rejected the motion and set a date for adjudication. Judge Farghali further decided that both parties can however submit written briefs to the court within the next two weeks.

The EIPR filed an urgent lawsuit seeking a suspension of the Minister of Health decree that went into effect on 25 September 2009. The decree establishes a new regime for medicine pricing in Egypt that is based on current global consumer prices instead of the actual production cost of medicines. The lawsuit argues that the decree is a violation of the right to access to medicines since it will raise the prices of many of them, particularly the cheaper generic medicines on which the neediest Egyptians heavily rely.

For more information, see:

• Facts about the New Drug-Pricing Decree - Brief Guide