No Agreement On Management Of WHO Relationship With External Actors 22/05/2014 by Catherine Saez, Intellectual Property Watch 2 Comments Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)After several drafting sessions this week meant to finalise a framework to govern the engagement of the World Health Organization with the private sector, nongovernmental organisations, foundations and academics, country delegates admitted defeat today at the World Health Assembly. The drafting group established on the second day of the World Health Assembly (WHA), taking place from 19-24 May, was working from a proposed framework [pdf], which was presented to the WHA for approval (IPW, WHO, 21 May 2014). It appears that after hours of attempts at finding consensual language, it was decided by the group that further discussions would be undertaken in the months to come, for the framework to be presented again at the WHO Executive Board in January, according to several sources. It was unclear at press time how the group’s decision will be handled by the Assembly. Normally a drafting group reports back to the committee. Committee decisions then go to the full membership for approval. Two informal consultations were organised by the WHO, in October and on 27-28 March, to refine the framework. But the issue is a prickly one, as some countries are particularly concerned over the involvement of the private sector in the activities of WHO and about possible undue influence on the global health organisation. As the drafting group broke this afternoon after several hours of effort, several sources told Intellectual Property Watch that the main area of contention remained the language on management of conflicts of interest. According to a developed country source, one of the reasons for the failure to agree on common language was “the level of confidence in public structures” and different experiences with confidence among countries participating in the drafting group. The drafting group was open-ended and all interested members were welcome to attend. In general, when the document was presented in one of the committees of the WHA, developed countries were in favour of the adoption of the framework as submitted, while other countries asked for more discussion on the framework, such as the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR). A Latin American source told Intellectual Property Watch that “some countries needed clarifications regarding the different kinds of interactions the WHO can establish with non-state actors.” Latin American countries, the source said, need more detail and analysis of the framework. Another source from Latin America said many aspects of the framework are problematic and “some aspects must be clarified or be removed.” In particular, the source said, seconded personnel, which are on loan to WHO and work within its offices. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Related Catherine Saez may be reached at email@example.com."No Agreement On Management Of WHO Relationship With External Actors" by Intellectual Property Watch is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.