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HPW

With the first-ever malaria vaccines rolling out across Africa and a next-generation tuberculosis (TB) vaccine in testing, scientific advances are driving an unparalleled expansion of vaccine development. But vaccines in development don’t become immunizations that protect our health without concerted efforts by global initiatives like Gavi, the vaccine alliance, that help bring these life-saving products to the world’s poorest countries.

Next month, Gavi will kick-off a campaign to raise several billion dollars to deliver on its new strategy. The stakes are high: falling short of its target could delay delivery of vaccines to those most in need.

Brussels Times

After years of back-and-forth talks on how to best protect the world from the next pandemic disaster - World Health Organization Member States remain at a stalemate - with lower-income countries still lacking access to lifesaving health commodities and the ability to secure vital technologies and know-how during global public health emergencies - issues world leaders must rectify immediately.

As the 77th World Health Assembly (WHA) convened this year in Geneva, there was much anticipation as to the fate of the WHO Pandemic Agreement. For the last two years, Member States have been engaged in negotiations to create an agreement to prevent a repeat of the COVID-19 global health catastrophe - a human tragedy that is less about a virus and more about nationalist protectionism, corporate profit interests, and unacceptable inequity.

GHF

"In this story, we look at how these negotiations unfolded during the last week in the midst of an ongoing Assembly. Negotiators who have been working on these discussions included both Geneva-based diplomats and capital-based experts – they spent days, and long hours into the nights, in drafting group sessions. See our earlier story, when a drafting group was established on May 29th. The following four days was a determined effort by all countries to get this over the finish line by around 4 p.m. on June 1, 2024.

For some delegations, it was a challenging process to finalize and agree on the amendments, while political and highly contentious discussions unfolded in the next room at the premises of the United Nations in Geneva. Some developing country diplomats hopped in to watch the voting on matters related to Palestine, and going back in, into the IHR drafting group sessions negotiating financing mechanisms among others. They not only survived, but also won on both accounts."

[Report covers

GHF

Member States of WHO secured a desperate win in reaching consensus on the amendments to the International Health Regulations, following more than two years of systematic and intense negotiations, culminating in an astonishing agreement in the final hours of the 77th World Health Assembly. The consensus assumes greater significance in an otherwise difficult meeting of WHO member states this year, that was fraught with several political resolutions laced with rounds of voting among 194 countries.

GHF

Member States of WHO secured a desperate win in reaching consensus on the amendments to the International Health Regulations, following more than two years of systematic and intense negotiations, culminating in an astonishing agreement in the final hours of the 77th World Health Assembly. The consensus assumes greater significance in an otherwise difficult meeting of WHO member states this year, that was fraught with several political resolutions laced with rounds of voting among 194 countries.

Swiss Info

During the Covid pandemic, the US pharmaceutical company Johnson & Johnson produced their Covid vaccine in South Africa. This was then exported to Europe, leaving the local population with no production for themselves.

In the wake of the pandemic, Gavi, which aims to improve the supply of vaccines to poorer countries, is pushing for better access to vaccines to become a priority for the international community, an approach that is widely supported by the G7 and G20 countries.

“Today, Africa imports 99% of the vaccines that are needed on the continent,” David Kinder, Gavi’s director of development financing, tells SWI swissinfo.ch. This includes vaccines against malaria and cholera, which kill hundreds of thousands of children every year. The Gavi vaccine alliance includes UN organisations such as the World Health Organization (WHO), UNICEF and the World Bank, as well as developing and donor countries, the vaccine industry, research institutions, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and NGOs.

MSF Access Campaign

As an international medical humanitarian organisation, Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) witnesses daily the gaps in access to lifesaving medical products, such as vaccines, therapeutics, and diagnostics, that are needed to address the health needs of people suffering in humanitarian and medical crises. These gaps have deadly consequences.

Each time a medical product is out of reach, there are significant barriers in accessing critical information that determines the availability, affordability and accessibility of these products. For decades, MSF has witnessed astonishing levels of opacity in the biomedical research and development (R&D) system, and in subsequent supply and procurement processes. The lack of access to information has therefore itself become a barrier to equitable access to medical products.

South Centre

We congratulate the Member States of the World Health Organization (WHO) for their efforts to approve the revisions to the International Health Regulations (IHRs) (2005) at the 77th World Health Assembly (WHA), despite the tensions and pressure that characterized the final phase of the negotiations.

[The Statement then goes on to highlight the important changes. See]

HPW

After two years of intensive negotiations – including long nights this week – the World Health Assembly (WHA) finally passed amendments to the International Health Regulations (IHR)  and committed to completing pandemic agreement talks within a year. 

After failing to agree on the amendments before WHA opened on Monday, member states have been racing to the finish in a drafting committee during this week in meetings that often went into the early hours.

“Tonight we have all won and the world has won. You have made the world safer,” said a hoarse WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, who lost his voice during the late-night sessions.

Morehttps://healthpolicy-watch.news/the-world-has-won-new-regulations-to-protect-against-pandemics-finally-passed/

HPW

After two years of intensive negotiations – including long nights this week – the World Health Assembly (WHA) finally passed amendments to the International Health Regulations (IHR)  and committed to completing pandemic agreement talks within a year. 

After failing to agree on the amendments before WHA opened on Monday, member states have been racing to the finish in a drafting committee during this week in meetings that often went into the early hours.

“Tonight we have all won and the world has won. You have made the world safer,” said a hoarse WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, who lost his voice during the late-night sessions.

[see full report here]

Note deep disappointment expressed by Nina Schwalbe of Spark Street Advisors that all references to compliance have been dropped in the IHR.

“The amendments do not include any provisions for a compliance mechanism. How can countries be held accountable to their commitments with a compliance mechanism?”