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The 73rd World Health Assembly resumes virtually next
week at a time when large parts of Europe including Switzerland are locked
down. What’s more the Director General of WHO, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus is
currently in self-quarantine after coming in contact with a COVID-19 confirmed case. It is as
somber a milieu that one could be faced with...
If the world needed proof of international
cooperation in the midst of the ever-widening gulfs between increasingly nationalistic
democracies, it got one – the first ever virtual World Health Assembly that
concluded 19th May. Not only did capitals express solidarity (many,
dialling in from cloistered chambers), there was a resounding support fo...
At the beginning
of this year, a somewhat nebulous period, when a little known disease was
bubbling up in China, it was difficult to distinguish between politically
motivated decisions from those taken solely based on evidence keeping public
health concerns in mind.
A month ago, in
her early assessment of the novel coronavirus outbreak that...
The 146th Executive Board meeting of
the WHO was like an investment case in action for donors.
Here was WHO leadership noting the passing of key
resolutions, lending support to new initiatives, urging countries to work
together to arrive at a consensus on vexatious issues, while briefing technical
experts and the media every day on the emer...
Drug procurement is “big money”. Naturally information follows money. But information also enables negotiations. This is particularly vital if you are a health ministry official trying to negotiate prices of medicines based on their patent status while procuring drugs. Although it exists, information around if and where a specific drug has b...
Disease unites the world. So
does the impact of unbridled capitalism. Rich and poor countries alike, came
together this week to take first steps to understand why medicines cost as much
as they do. The 72nd World Health Assembly that convened in Geneva,
resolution to push for
greater transparency around the prices of drugs, but fought...
When global health policy wonks talk about
the financing pressures of the World
Health Organization, there is a certain kind of despondency. Many of the 194 of
its member states do not want
to cough up more money to enable WHO to do what it must. Not only that, they
also want WHO to do more than it does.
As a result, it has forced the insti...
When the Tedros administration assumed office in 2017,
there was some apprehension in certain sections of the global health community,
about the extent to which WHO would protect and pursue the contentious issue of
access to medicines.
Less than two years on, one can be fairly convinced that
this administration is serious in leading from th...