This event was sponsored by the Harvard Global Health Institute and the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University.
"Employing this quality assessment technology would increase the government’s ability to regulate drug distribution" argues HLS Professor William Fisher.
GAiA's first 'Conversation on Global Health, Innovation, and the Digital World' hosted in collaboration with the Harvard Global Health Institute was held on June 12, 2017. GAiA co-director William Fisher presented on the potential for miniature spectrometers to reduce the use and distribution of counterfeit drugs in Sub-Saharan Africa. Fisher argues that employing this quality assessment technology would increase the government’s ability to regulate drug distribution and empower individuals to confirm the authenticity of the drugs they purchase, ultimately increasing the use of therapeutically effective medicines. He outlined a pilot project in Namibia being initiated to use this new technology in reducing illegal distribution of counterfeit antimalarial medication.
Fisher's talk sparked a rich discussion on the practical considerations and technical limitations of the initiative, as well as the implications of utilizing this technology as a tool to enforce IP laws across borders.