In news–Member states of the World Health Organization (WHO) announced during the third meeting of the Intergovernmental Negotiating Body (INB) that they will discuss the ‘zero draft’ of the legally binding pandemic accord in February 2023.
What is pandemic treaty?
- In December 2021, the World Health Assembly agreed to start a global process to draft the pandemic treaty.
- The need for an updated set of rules was felt after the COVID-19 pandemic exposed the shortcomings of global health systems.
- The Health Assembly adopted a decision titled “The World Together” at its second special session since it was founded in 1948.
- Under the decision, the health organisation established an intergovernmental negotiating body (INB) to draft and negotiate the contents of the pandemic treaty in compliance with Article 19 of the WHO Constitution.
- The INB’s work is based on the principles of inclusiveness, transparency, efficiency, Member State leadership and consensus.
- The pandemic treaty is expected to cover aspects like data sharing and genome sequencing of emerging viruses and equitable distribution of vaccines and drugs and related research throughout the world.
What is Article 19 of the WHO Constitution?
- Article 19 of the WHO Constitution gives the World Health Assembly the authority to adopt conventions or agreements on matters of health.
- A two-third majority is needed to adopt such conventions or agreements.
- The WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control was set up under Article 19 and it came into force in 2005.