Demand forecast for antiretroviral drugs in low and middle-income countries, 2007–2008
In the past five years low- and middle-income countries have scaled up HIV treatment. Such rapid global scale-up has greatly increased the demand on antiretroviral drug producers, with anecdotal reports that some of them are having occasional difficulties in meeting new orders. One factor that has led to supply shortages has been the absence of accurate forecasts for the quantities of antiretroviral drugs needed in the future. These are essential for production planning and to ensure uninterrupted drug supply.
To respond to this situation, WHO and UNAIDS established a technical working group to develop the forecasts of global demand for antiretroviral drugs presented in this report. The working group comprises WHO, UNAIDS, Mexico’s National Institute of Public Health, and the Clinton Foundation HIV/AIDS Initiative.
Based on the scale-up observed during 2006, the forecasts provide 2007–2008 estimates of the number of people receiving antiretroviral therapy. The volume of current and future demand for active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) for first- and second-line antiretroviral drugs is calculated using two methods: a normative approach which models implementation of country-specific guidelines, and an empirical model which projects 2006 trends in drug use determined by a survey of national HIV programmes.