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Pandemic Accord Is 20% Health Equity and 80% Inequity, Says AHF

MIAMI, May 07, 2024--(BUSINESS WIRE)--With the Pandemic Accord negotiations set to resume tomorrow for a last-ditch effort to find consensus before the deadline at the end of May, AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) has described the current state of the text as 20% equity and 80% inequity.

Specifically, the comment refers to Article 12 of the Accord, which deals with the World Health Organization (WHO) Pathogen Access and Benefit-Sharing System (PABS). It says that in exchange for sharing pathogen information, developing countries will be entitled to access 20% of the production of safe, efficacious and effective pandemic-related health products in a timely manner via the WHO – 10% as a donation, and 10% at a discounted WHO price.

"According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), there are currently 152 developing countries where 6.82 billion people live, or 85.4% of the world's population. Thus, what we can conclude from the language of Article 12 is that a commitment of 10% for donations, plus 10% at affordable prices for critical commodities like vaccines adds up to 20% in support of global health equity, while the remaining 80% remains beyond the reach of developing countries, perpetuating inequity," said Dr. Jorge Saavedra, Executive Director of the AHF Institute for Global Public Health in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. "This should be completely unacceptable for developing countries. Continuing this imbalance could potentially lead to severe health crises in these nations which will eventually and inevitably impact the entire world – a situation that we cannot afford to ignore in the wake of COVID-19."

Another major concern about the latest draft of Article 12 of the Pandemic Accord, raised by the AHF Global Public Health Institute, is that the limited benefits offered are tied to a pandemic declaration, meaning that the public health goods needed by developing countries for prevention and preparedness will not be available before a pandemic is declared. In other words, they will be too little, too late.

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"This is perhaps the last chance the world has to address the systemic inequality in the current global public health order for a long time – giving in to pressure from corporate interests and profit motives at this point is beyond foolish. If we fail to enshrine equity as a fundamental principle of global public health, all countries will be forced to pay many times over. The negotiations have been long, difficult, and contentious, but developed countries must find the wherewithal to do the right thing," said AHF President Michael Weinstein.

AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF), the largest global AIDS organization, currently provides medical care and/or services to over 1.9 million clients in 47 countries worldwide in the US, Africa, Latin America/Caribbean, the Asia/Pacific Region and Europe. To learn more about AHF, please visit our website: www.aidshealth.org, find us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/aidshealth and follow us on Twitter: @aidshealthcare and Instagram: @aidshealthcare

The AHF Global Public Health Institute was created as a joint initiative between the AIDS Healthcare Foundation and the University of Miami in order to engage in global public health policy analysis and research to generate objective evidence that can inform improvements in public health policy at the global, regional, national and local levels, particularly for infectious diseases. To learn more about the AHF Global Public Health Institute, visit https://ahfinstitute.org/.

View source version on businesswire.com: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20240506404751/en/

Contacts

U.S. MEDIA CONTACT:
Ged Kenslea,
Senior Director, Communications, AHF
+1.323.308.1833 work
+1.323.791.5526 mobile
gedk@aidshealth.org

Denys Nazarov,
Director of Global Policy &
Communications, AHF
+1.323.308.1829
denys.nazarov@ahf.org