South Africa ensures reduction of prices for Bedaquiline to benefit the world

The cost of bedaquiline drops to 400 USD/6-month treatment course, effective immediately and will be made available for all TB programs procuring from the Stop TB Partnership’s Global Drug Facility (GDF).

23 July 2018, Amsterdam – The Minister of Health of South Africa and Chair of the Stop TB Partnership Board, His Excellency Aaron Motsoaledi delivered a strong and passionate closing note at the pre-conference TB2018 of the 22nd International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2018) that was organized by the International AIDS Society (IAS) with the Stop TB Partnership and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
Dr. Aaron Motsoaledi’s speech culminated with a far-reaching announcement based on the recent move of the South African Department of Health that recommended replacement of the injectable phase of treating multi-drug resistant (MDR) tuberculosis (TB) with bedaquiline in the short treatment regimen for people affected by drug-resistant TB.
The Minister announced a significant reduction in the price of bedaquiline from 750 USD to 400 USD for a 6-month treatment course. The Minister said that this decrease in price over the next 8 months will lead to savings of more than 36 million USD from the South African health budget.

The Minister also called on the World Health Organization (WHO) to urgently update the MDR TB treatment guidelines to reflect the body of evidence available on the use of bedaquiline in the treatment of drug resistant TB.
Paul Stoffels, Vice Chair of the Executive Committee and Chief Scientific Officer of Johnson & Johnson followed His Excellency Minister Motsoaledi and announced that the price of 400 USD for a 6-month course of treatment will be available to all programs procuring from the Stop TB Partnership’s GDF as well. For countries that benefit from the bedaquiline donation program through March 2019, this new price is effective beginning April 2019.
Multiple key stakeholders, including His Excellency Dr. Berhard S. Haufiku, the Minister of Health of Namibia; Peter Sands, Executive Director of the Global Fund; Dr. Kitty van Weezenbeek, Executive Director of KNCV Tuberculosis Foundation; TB survivors and representatives of the TB Community -  the Global Coalition of TB Activists and TB People, expressed satisfaction upon hearing the announcement and hope towards achieving the bold targets expected to be endorsed in the Political Declaration of the United Nations high level meeting on  TB.
"What an amazing announcement to end this 12 hours marathon meeting on TB we had here at TB2018. Basically, South Africa negotiated down the price of bedaquiline and the world will benefit. This is one first step in a chain of many more to come in terms of prices, scale, coverage towards ending TB" said Lucica Ditiu, Executive Director, Stop TB Partnership.