Voluntary patent pooling in public health is a mechanism for the management of intellectual property (IP) rights that seeks to promote innovation and access, particularly in developing countries. Voluntary patent pools operate within the existing trade and IP framework and can contribute to the realization of “the right to health” and “the right to enjoy the benefits of scientific progress” as guaranteed in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) and in the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR). Voluntary patent pooling also provides a practical example of an approach to promote policy coherence in the field of public health.

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