Simply to dismiss the private sector out of hand would be a mistake for the global public health field. Private companies play a pivotal role in public health issues. It is only through a marriage of the public and the private that we can see effective change in health issues across the globe.
It was not a great surprise that the FDA's new cephalosporin livestock rules have the Agribusiness Seal of Approval. It was Big Pharma and Agribusiness lobbying that killed its stronger cephalosporin rules issued four years after.
It used to be joked that a consultant is someone who borrows your watch to tell you what time it is. These days, the opportunist is Big Pharma, which raises your insurance premiums and taxes while providing you "low-priced" drugs that you paid for.
So far in this election cycle, the only vaguely relevant recognition of the importance of leadership in biotechnology for the country's future was a polemical and uninformative exchange on vaccination policy.
A number of NGOs working on public health issues are concerned that the President may push India to adopt more strict intellectual property protections on pharmaceutical drugs. They have reasons to be concerned.
The pharmaceutical industry relies predominately upon patent protection of intellectual property to yield profits that are critical to support research and development, but there are exceptions that demonstrate the value of open innovation.