Pandemic Accord: MSF’s Comments on Equity Provisions in INB Proposal for Negotiating Text
On 16 October 2023, the World Health Organization (WHO)’s Intergovernmental Negotiating Body (INB) released its proposal for the negotiating text of the WHO Pandemic Agreement (commonly known as “pandemic accord”).
In our view, INB’s proposal represents an improvement over previous drafts of the accord in some key respects. It recognises the need for transparency in some critical areas, establishes governments’ responsibility to use public health flexibilities and agreements on intellectual property (IP) waivers, and creates a mechanism by which WHO can stockpile and distribute medical products based on public health needs during pandemics. However, several shortcomings remain, which could impede the effectiveness of the final outcome of the negotiation in ensuring and enabling equity of access to lifesaving medical products, and in changing the deficiencies in pandemic prevention, preparedness and response (PPR) governance and accountability that have characterised past outbreaks.
This briefing document provides an article-by-article analysis of the improvements and shortcomings in INB’s proposal.