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WHO set to address resource inequities in new treaty

Health reporter Anjalee Khemlani outlines the resource inequities the World Health Organization is set to address in a new treaty.

Video Transcript

- And Anjalee, the pandemic highlighted some of these stark inequities that exist globally when it comes to the distribution of vaccines, treatments, and other resources. And the WHO began working on a legally binding treaty in 2021 that should have a full official draft next year. Now, you spoke to one of the contributors from the US. What did they have to say?

ANJALEE KHEMLANI: That's right. Georgetown [INAUDIBLE] Larry Gostin caught up with me after coming back from a trip to Geneva and just gave me a little overview of what's going on there. And it's really interesting because there's so much discussion about the equity globally. But here in the US, it's kind of flying under the radar. And the really big impact on pharma companies is set to hit if this does, in fact, go through.

Current draft looking at things like sharing of intellectual property and finding a way to solve that problem. That was really one of the biggest hiccups we saw in the equitable distribution. We also know that there's a focus on climate change as well. And pharma companies are in charge of some of these things like fertilizers. And so that really has a large impact on the sector. And as of right now, it seems like the discussion is still happening.

But we do have to see how this all pans out and what this legally binding treaty is going to look like for these companies, what impact it could potentially have, and how we might be able to solve the problem in the future. So while things are still moving, the official draft looking to be ready by the end of 2023, according to a World Health Organization expert-- official, sorry. And so we'll wait to get more details on that. But as of right now, really building out to have a huge impact on the pharma sector.

- Certainly a very important story there. Anjalee Khemlani, thanks so much.