[Ip-health] Brazil's statement to the 64th World Health Assembly on the future of financing

Thirukumaran Balasubramaniam thiru at keionline.org
Wed May 18 07:54:27 PDT 2011


The future of financing for WHO A64/4
Provisional agenda item 11


At the outset we would like to thank the report by the Director-General on WHO reform and its future financing for a healthy future. We acknowledge the efforts to reflect comments and suggestions presented by Member-States throughout the ongoing consultation process and believe the document is a good basis for our continued debate on this important issue.

Inclusiveness and transparency are key to build confidence and ensure a sense of ownership among all Member-States over this reform process and this institution. We are convinced that WHO needs to rediscover and better value its fundamental multilateral identity.

As the United Nations health agency, the World Health Organization’s role as the leading and coordinating health authority must be reinforced. Several adjustments are required to adapt the Organization to growing and pressing demands as well as to an increasingly complex international architecture. The reform must encompass a few basic principals: (a) It must be Member-State driven; (b) it must be based on consensus and (c) it must be incremental.

It is also urgent to listen more and more attentively to what civil society has to say and less to private donors. WHO needs to prioritize collective interests and better manage conflict of interests and corporate demands. If we are sincere about a reform for a healthier future, the main goal of the Organization must be social justice and equality and fairness in access to health for all.

To fulfill its mandate WHO requires an adequate structure, an appropriate internal governance and a competent staff who is able to think strategically and develop and implement policies, projects and programs accordingly to WHO’s governing bodies resolutions and decisions.

WHO’s core business is the promotion of the right to health. The strengthening of health systems, access to medicines and addressing social and economic determinants are public health priorities to be pursued at all levels. We welcome the fact that these elements have been highlighted in the document but we need to further define how these proposals can be supported and implemented.

Regarding the elements of the program of reform (Annex to the Inform), to be further refined and developed between June and October 2011, consultations with Member States must be prioritized, using experts views and proposals as ‘reference’ and not ‘guidance’. With regard to the Report on financial and administrative implications (A64/4 Add1), in order to avoid conflict of interests, we suggest that only regular budgetary resources are used to finance the reform process

Brazil expresses deep concern regarding the contents of the document on the “development plan” which was circulated quite late, in particular the reference to “a mechanism to pool funds from private entities”. We are definitely not ready to approve such document. More time is needed to analyze all the elements therein and finetune the proposals

Brazil is committed to continue to constructively contribute to this process. Member-States must further engage in discussions and identify ways and means to financially support WHO. Predictability and sustainability are key. WHO must be fit for purpose. This includes not only reform but adequate financing. It is our collective responsibility to support WHO fulfill its Constitutional objective which is the “attainment by all peoples of the highest possible level of health”.

Thank you!


Thiru Balasubramaniam
Geneva Representative
Knowledge Ecology International (KEI)

thiru at keionline.org

Tel: +41 22 791 6727
Mobile: +41 76 508 0997

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