Issue brief |

Fatal Flaws: How Kenya's 2008 Anti-Counterfeit Act could endanger access to medicines

Key sections of the Anti-Counterfeit Act must be clarified or amended if Kenyan patients are to continue accessing quality medicines at affordable prices.

Ambiguities in the definition of counterfeit products to potentially include legally manufactured generics and overbroad enforcement provisions, mean that the 2008 Anti- Counterfeit Act risks banning the importation of and hindering access to life-saving essential medicines, such as those used by Médecins Sans Frontières to treat people living with HIV/AIDS. MSF urges that the 2008 Anti-Counterfeit Act be clarified to ensure that measures taken to prevent counterfeit medicines to reach consumers, do not hamper in any way trade in and access to legitimate generic medicines. 

MSF began treating people living with HIV/AIDS with antiretroviral (ARVs) medicines in Kenya at the end of 2001. MSF currently provides antiretroviral treatment to more than 140,000 HIV-positive adults and children in 30 countries, including Kenya.