This week’s (26 – 28 November) Member State meeting at WHO on the recommendations of the CEWG resulted in mixed outcomes, with progress on some issues such as monitoring, but no progress on the more problematic issue of financing. The report of the meeting, which will go to WHO Executive Board next January, is not publicly available; however a version of it dated early this morning is available here.
Before the negotiations began Danny Edwards of COHRED was interviewed by Knowledge Ecology International (KEI) about his expectations for the meeting. This video can be viewed below.
The statement made by COHRED preceding the meeting, on behalf of the more than 40 organisations which signed on is here.
Selected major outcomes in the report are:
Urging of member states to:
- Strengthen health R&D capacity, and increase investment in health R&D
- Establish/strengthen national health R&D observatories for tracking and monitoring of health R&D information
- Promote co-ordination of health R&D at national and regional levels
- Contribute to coordinated and sustainable financing mechanisms for health R&D, through voluntary contributions
Requesting the Director-General of WHO to:
- Develop norms and standards for health R&D classification
- Support Member States in establishing health R&D capacities and monitoring of relevant health R&D information
- Establishment of a Global Health R&D Observatory within WHO’s Secretariat to monitor and analyse relevant information on health R&D.
- To convene another meeting of Member States prior to the 69th WHA in May 2016.
The COHRED reaction to this report follows:
“While the Council on Health Research for Development (COHRED) welcomed the strong support of WHO Member States at the CEWG meeting this week to strengthen health R&D capacities and national capabilities for monitoring of health R&D information, it is clear that Member States also need to ensure that committed financing is available for these recommendations to become a workable reality rather than more rhetoric. We look forward to working with WHO Member States to support low and middle income countries build greater health R&D capacity, and support the monitoring and co-ordination of it.
In addition, we strongly urge that both WHO and WHO Member States maintain their focus and not let the critical issues of financing and co-ordination of health R&D slip while Member States wait to reconvene in 2016. It is clear to COHRED that all countries must increase investments in health R&D to ensure the realisation of greater, more sustainable health, equity and development.”
For the call to action and the full list of organisations that signed on in support, click here.