Equity needs to be (even) more central under the WHO Pandemic Agreement

Journal of Medical Ethics 49 (12):797-798 (2023)
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Abstract

The World Health Organization (WHO) is currently in advanced stages of developing a ‘WHO convention, agreement, or other international instrument on pandemic prevention, preparedness and response’ (also known as WHO CA+, referred to below as: Pandemic Agreement). 1 Rightly, the instrument places equity at the centre. Yet, it currently also omits reference to an impactful tool to promote equity that has been adopted in an unprecedented manner during COVID-19—a set of measures known as disadvantage indices. Embedding disadvantage indices would provide concrete constructive guidance; align the Pandemic Agreement with the use of indices by other United Nations (UN) agencies; help realise the Agreement’s goal of addressing social and other determinants of health within countries, and furthermore offer feasible ways improving equity in allocation across countries. WHO member states began work on a Pandemic Agreement in December 2021. The current timeline envisages a final version to be considered by...

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Pandemic prioritarianism.Lasse Nielsen - 2022 - Journal of Medical Ethics 48 (4):236-239.

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