TPP would kill off medical arbitrage
And by "medical arbitrage," I mean your ability to exit the brutal and hideously expensive U.S. health care
rental extraction device system in favor of more humane and more reasonably priced alternatives available elsewhere (Exhibit A: My teeth!)* Via Public CItizen:
The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Intellectual Property Chapter published by WikiLeaks reveals that after years of negotiations, the United States still seeks to impose medical procedure patents on Asian and Latin American countries. All eleven other negotiating countries oppose the proposal. Medical procedure patents raise healthcare costs. Health providers, including surgeons, could be liable for the methods they use to treat patients. Essentially, except for when a surgeon uses her bare hands, surgical methods would be patent eligible subject matter under the U.S. proposal. While U.S. law immunizes certain care providers from infringement liability, the U.S. TPP proposal fails to include these safeguards, risking yet more serious consequences for TPP negotiating countries.
So like a method of doing root canal surgery would be patented by some troll in the US, and my Thai doctor's price would go up? And the troll skims it all off? They're fucking kidding, right?
It's like TPP is the neo-liberal id, screaming, in a thousand different ways, "You can run but you can't hide!"
Granted, the TPP seem to have died, for now, but it's well funded by ginormous assholes, so it will keep coming back.
NOTE * Yes, the arbitrage comes from my privileged position as a citizen of the United States, once a first-world country in areas beyond the Acela, which entitles me to various free gifts, including the dollar; arbitrage is (is it not?) always a function of privilege of some kind. On the other hand, I'm going to spend that dollar somewhere....