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Pandemic treaty: panel calls for “reset” to talks as negotiators miss deadline

BMJ 2024; 385 doi: (Published 30 May 2024) Cite this as: BMJ 2024;385:q1193
  1. Luke Taylor
  1. Bogota

Negotiations of a World Health Organization (WHO) global pandemic accord need a “reset” after member states failed to meet the 24 May deadline, a panel of experts monitoring the talks has said.

The future of the accord now hangs in the balance, and any agreement will likely take a minimum of a year to reach as extensive negotiations are still required, member states at the World Health Assembly in Geneva said on 28 May.

The accord is intended to prevent a repeat of the global disaster seen during the covid-19 pandemic, which took millions of lives, but negotiators were unable to come up with a draft of the treaty on 24 May so that it could be formally approved by the assembly. Nation states are now discussing how to change the negotiation process so that they can overcome key sticking points, among them disagreement over the redistribution of health products during a global health emergency, technology transfer, and financing for low and middle income countries.

Despite “significant efforts” by the Intergovernmental Negotiating Body Bureau, negotiations require a “reset process” to get …

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