[Ip-health] WHA 68: MSF's intervention on the Follow-up of the report of the Consultative Expert Working Group on Research and Development: Financing and Coordination

Michelle French Michelle.French at newyork.msf.org
Fri May 22 08:38:13 PDT 2015

Available online here: 
See all our WHA 68 interventions and briefing documents here:  

WHO 68th World Health assembly, 2015
Provisional agenda item 17.4 – Follow-up of the report of the Consultative 
Expert Working Group on Research and Development: Financing and 

Speaker: Judit Rius Sanjuan

This past year will be remembered for the Ebola crisis, the growing global 
threat of antimicrobial resistance and the continuing challenge of 
neglected diseases. A thread running through these global health concerns 
is the dearth in innovation for new diagnostics, drugs, and vaccines. Yet, 
even when we have significant medical breakthroughs, such as drugs for 
hepatitis C, they are priced out of reach for millions.

Ebola, AMR, and hepatitis are not exceptions; they are deadly reminders of 
the failure of the R&D system.

In past years we have seen that adding more funding and subsidies combined 
with even fewer regulatory requirements is not the solution. Today in the 
case of Ebola, even if we accept limitations to ongoing efforts: 
inadequate collaboration, data sharing and access commitments; the 
progress made in such a short time shows what can be achieved in applying 
some CEWG recommendations such as increased coordination, monitoring, 
priority setting and funding with WHO playing a key role. The unnecessary 
deaths and suffering caused by this Ebola crisis should be a wake up call.

The CEWG is our roadmap. Voluntary contributions made by some governments 
to demonstration projects are very welcome but just a first step. 
Sufficient, sustainable public funding coordinated across all health 
concerns tied to principles of de-linkage and open innovation ensuring 
both innovation and access, is the next step.

This is why MSF is calling for a Global Biomedical R&D Fund and Mechanism 
for Innovations of Public Health Importance. We must move from discussion 
to implementation. Governments, philanthropic funders and the 
international community need to deliver patient-driven innovations and 
embrace systemic change.

This Assembly should not conclude without setting a date in 2015 for the 
open-ended meeting to prepare for the discussions at the 69th WHA on the 
full CEWG report, including a global R&D framework.


Michelle French
Sr. Communications Manager, MSF Access Campaign
Doctors Without Borders\Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF)
Office: +1.212.763.5735 | Mobile: +1.646.552.4600
michelle.french at newyork.msf.org | Skype: michellejfrench
www.msfaccess.org | twitter.com/MSF_access | www.facebook.com/MSFaccess

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