Public Services International

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Seventy-second World Health Assembly (A72/1)
Agenda Item: 
11.7 Access to medicines and vaccines

PSI welcomes the opportunity to speak on agenda item 11.7. We share the view that equitable access to medicines and vaccines is a global priority if SDG 3.8 is to be achieved. Thus, the point of departure for aligning public health needs with economic and social development objectives, must be one which puts people over profit.
This requires price transparency, including transparency in research and development costs. Opacity promotes rents in addition to fair profit. This benefits only big business, whilst undermining access in low and middle-income countries, as well as poor people in more developed countries.
PSI thus supports the draft action plan’s commitment to “evidence-based selection and fair and affordable pricing”. We also welcome WHO’s declared “support for the consideration of public health implications”, in providing technical support and capacity-building to Member States. We call for this commitment to be concrete, in the light of Resolution WHA59.26.
The importance of the health workforce for ensuring equitable access cannot be overemphasized. We thus support the Map’s perspective on this.
PSI urges Member States to comprehensively support the Draft Road Map and the draft WHA resolution on “Improving the transparency of markets for drugs, vaccines and other health-related technologies”