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This Newsletter aims to provide information regarding the latest successes, opportunities and changes in UAEM, as well as the most important news from the intersection of intellectual property and global health.
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Dear UAEMers all over Europe!
We are pleased to share with you our latest issue. Feel free to send us some content for the next edition
(uaem-europe-newsletter@googlegroups.com): about your chapter, global health issues, a specific project or idea... It will be very much appreciated! We would like to hear what you think about this month's edition, too. 
Enjoy reading, 
The Newsletter team -- Andia, Chris, Irene and Josephine
The June Issue

Hi from the Board!

Dear UAEMers new and old,

 

Before giving you an update of our latest work, we would like to take this opportunity once again to thank all of those who made the European Conference such a magnificent experience. In the aftermath, we have begun to organise ourselves for the year ahead.

 

One of the first tasks has been to begin the initiation of the new board members, although this is a gradual process. We have provided Alan, Kush, Max, and Tommi,  with information about our work and taken some time to organise ourselves. This process will be finalised during our first physical meeting from 18-20 July.
 

On the human resources front, we have finalised a new contract for the Executive Director, which will ensure his employment for another year. We are also evaluating his work from the last year. With regards to fundraising, a proposal was recently submitted to the Camino Foundation for the coming year, and we are planning other proposals in line with our strategic and action plans. Elsewhere, the sustainable structure working group has now been established, and has begun the process of recruiting members.

 

Finally, as Julia Karner steps down from the Board we hope you will all join us in thanking her for her hard work and dedication, and wish her all the best for the future.

 

Sincerely,

 

UAEM European Board

Alan, Caroline, Clara, Chris, Kush, Johannes, Max, Tommi

 

Bye Bye, Bryan!

Some inspiring words from Bryan Collinsworth about UAEM's successes and upcoming challenges


"I'm still energized from the UAEM conference in Basel this year! It would have been exciting enough just to see how much UAEM Europe has grown since I started as Executive Director in January 2011 -- but even more thrilling was the tangible passion that over 200 students from 22 countries brought to the event. That enthusiasm for access to medicines clearly drives UAEM’s success across Europe -- and it's contagious!

Later this summer, I will be moving on from UAEM...

It will be so hard to take a step back from one of the most uniquely talented groups of people I've ever been a part of. I will miss working with all of you on our day-to-day struggles and victories; but I also know that UAEM bonds are strong, and I look forward to seeing all of you -- and sharing thoughts, laughs, hopes, challenges -- in the years ahead.

 

I want to reflect briefly on where UAEM is now and where we might go. We've achieved enormous gains in the past few years: almost 50 universities worldwide committing to Global Access Licensing; the growth of new chapters from Brazil to Poland to Turkey to Nepal; student voices impacting some of the most significant global health policy debates of our time.

 

Even better, new UAEM achievements pop up almost every day -- a news story, a journal article, a great advocacy action, compelling student testimony in the halls of government. I never know what I'll wake up to, but I know it will boost my faith in the power of young, committed activists to shift the course of global health.

 

Looking forward, I see one particular concern -- and at the same time an opportunity -- that I'd love for UAEM to aggressively address. Yes, we've clearly diagnosed the dangers to public health when universities set research priorities and make licensing decisions based solely on income potential, and we've taken concrete, pragmatic steps (like GAL) to push back on this approach.

 

But there is a broader shift in academic ideology that is driving "revenue-first" research on our campuses -- and UAEMers must address that root cause as well. Academic leaders around the world are increasingly downplaying the vision of universities as providers of high-quality education for diverse students, and as pursuers of open scientific inquiry for the public good. Instead, they are defining universities first and foremost as supporters and enhancers of private industry -- which in practical terms means administrator roles are filled by private-sector elites, research priorities are driven by private-sector profit interests, and educational priorities are set by the private sector's employment needs.

 

All this is justified in the name of "economic growth" -- as are so many of the austerity policies now wreaking havoc across the globe. But this ideology betrays not only the health needs of low-income communities worldwide, but also the students and faculty who join academic communities to pursue the public interest and their own intellectual growth -- not become instruments for narrow and inequitable corporate gain.

 

Going forward, I would like to see UAEM mount a more explicit challenge to this entire vision of academia -- beyond the specific medical research and licensing policies it foments. There are many other student groups we can partner with on this, because their concerns -- access to academic journals and clinical trial data, reducing conflicts of interest in medical education, fighting tuition hikes and reducing student debt -- all represent the same battle over whether academic institutions should primarily serve private financial interests or the public good.


UAEM has a unique voice to add here, and by fighting for a broad vision of campuses that promote academic freedom, pursue wide-ranging research unconstrained by conflicts, and prioritize the minds of students over the interests of industry, we will also change how universities approach the research and licensing issues we care about most. Both we and the patient communities we seek to support will be better off for it."
 
Bryan Collinsworth, Executive Director
Universities Allied for Essential Medicines (UAEM) 

UAEM at the 67th WHA

Meet our UAEM delegates! They spent a week in Geneva (Switzerland) for the sixty-seventh World Health Assembly (WHA). 
You can find some of their reflections in their tumblr.

Have you read their briefings? 
- Stop Hep C. Cure IP
-
Don't trade Wealth for Health.
- Tackling the Antimicrobial Resistance Innovation Crisis.
And last but not least... UAEM releases statement on 67th World Health Assembly to U.S. delegates

Chapter news

First UAEM event in Russia!

We are very happy to announce that one more UAEM chapter is settled down. It is in Kazan - Russia.

The first UAEM Kazan event was held on this Wednesday (4 June 2014). It was a speech for one hour long on the role of the University and patents in the global A2M. Within the audience there were researchers, the head of the departments, practicing clinical pharmacologists of Kazan as well as students.


The first reaction was quite differentiated. There were two blocks. Kazan pharmacologists accepted the SRL idea and understood the negative impact of patents to A2M. However, the researchers expressed the idea that SRL sounded unrealistically. “If university accepts SRL, its inventions are no longer interesting for Big Pharma” – said the head of the REC.
 

The discussion was quite long with many questions to the speaker. Finally, it was accepted that the topic was very complex and it had to be discussed only in the presence of experts from the TTO. So, one more discussion will take place in the nearest future.

If you have any pieces of advice on how to make our new Kazan - Russia chapter work more effective, you are welcome!
Aliya Safina

"NTD of the month"

An original project by UAEM Norway!

One of our new projects in UAEM Norway is the “monthly neglected disease poster” where we each month make a poster about a neglected disease and hang it up in the university bathrooms and public areas. The idea came forward as we where having a national UAEM meeting in Bergen this March while we were discussing possible ways to get more visible at the universities. We immediately fell in love with the idea, so only a couple of days after the  meeting the first poster was made and hung up around the medical universities all over Norway.

 

Since April when we started with the first poster we have now made three, and will continue to make more in the autumn when the students return to their universities.  The response from the other students has been great. It has made us more visible as an organization, made people more curious about our work and the challenges we are working with. The other students are just grateful to gain new knowledge while doing their necessities in the restrooms. For us as chapters it has also been a great experience learning more about the neglected diseases, and having a specific project to work towards on a monthly basis. In addition, the poster has proved to be a great way to introduce new members to UAEM by getting them involved with a very specific task.
 
This month’s neglected disease is Mycetoma, which is so neglected that it’s not even on the neglected diseases list of WHO. The disease is a chronic infectious disease that is endemic among people in rural areas in the so-called Mycetoma-belt, which includes parts of Africa, Central America and Asia.
 
The project was presented at the UAEM conference in Basel where we also got a lot of positive feedback and many interested chapters. We have sent out the template for the poster so that everyone that is interested can use it. However if there is an interest we would also gladly make an English version each month in addition to the one in Norwegian.
Would you like to appear in our newsletter? Please send us a picture of your proud members and a text about your chapter!
Upcoming events:
  • Barcelona Global Health Summer School “Health by System: The Role of Health Systems and the Path to Universal Health Coverage”: July 13-18, 2014, organized by AECS-Catalonia (IFMSA), ISGlobal and the Catalan Health Science Academy, in collaboration with the University of Barcelona. 
  • 4th Global Health Summer School (Sept 14–19, 2014) and the 3rd Global Health Conference (Sept 20, 2014) in Berlin: this year's topic: "From the Power of the Market to the Health of the People". Stay tuned
  • UAEM Chapter Training Camp (Berlin, September 8-12, 2014): are you one of the lucky few? Please share your experience and you skills by sending us your reflections.
  • World Trade Organisation Public Forum (Oct 1-3, 2014): this year's topic is "Trade matters to everyone" and UAEM will participate with a workshop on technology transfer and access to publicly-funded innovation!

Global Health Internships:

  • Copenhagen's School of Global Health has a huge list of interesting internships (MSF, HAI, WHO and other UN institutions). 
  • Do you recommend a specific internship? Share your experience!  

 

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