WHA72 – Open Letter to Delegates on Transparency Resolution Negotiations

On Thursday May 23, 2019, KEI, Doctors without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), and 44 more organizations and 10 individuals released an open letter to delegates of the 72nd World Health Assembly urging them to support a strong resolution on transparency and to submit the resolution for a vote before the Assembly.

While a strong resolution on transparency was introduced on Monday May 20, 2019, during the negotiations this week several countries such as Germany, the United Kingdom, the United States, and others have sought to drastically weaken the language of the resolution as well as delay or eliminate it altogether.

The open letter from civil society asks that the impactful disclosures included in the resolution be protected and supported, and for the negotiations themselves to be more transparent.

The text of the letter follows below, and a PDF version is available here:


(Note: As additional organizations/individuals sign on, this page and the PDF will be updated.)


Open Letter to Delegates of WHA 72 on Transparency Resolution Negotiations


We call upon delegates to reach consensus on a strong WHO transparency resolution that addresses every topic in the original proposal, including prices, revenues, units sold, marketing costs, clinical trial enrollment and outcomes, clinical trial costs, government R&D subsidies, patent landscapes, manufacturing know-how, and future meetings, forums and activities that collectively are designed to progressively expand and implement norms on transparency.  

We encourage delegates to support the specific language in the original resolution that requests the WHO Director-General to explore suitable options for alternative incentive frameworks to patent or regulatory monopolies that could better serve the needs of Member States in their efforts to attain Universal Health Coverage and support innovation.

During the negotiations, we ask that the negotiating text be released after every negotiating session, with country positions identified for any brackets or alternative texts proposed, in order to ensure that the negotiations on the transparency resolution are themselves transparent.

If the delegates are unable to reach consensus in the drafting group on the WHO transparency resolution, as a result of the objections of a few countries who seem determined to favor secrecy over transparency, and ignorance and propaganda over facts and objective evidence, we ask that the advocates of transparency submit a strong version of the resolution for a vote before the 72nd World Health Assembly.


Organizations (in alphabetical order)

  1. Acción Internacional para la Salud, Perú
  2. Act Up-Basel
  3. Aides (France)
  4. Alianza LAC-Global por el Acceso a Medicamentos (International)
  5. American Medical Student Association
  6. Americas TB Coalition
  7. BUKO Pharma-Kampagne
  8. Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network
  9. Cancer Alliance South Africa
  10. Centro de Información de Medicamentos de la Universidad Nacional de Colombia. (Colombia)
  11. Chronic Illness Advocacy & Awareness Group
  12. Comité de Veeduría y Cooperación en Salud (Colombia)
  13. Conferencia Episcopal de Colombia (Colombia)
  14. Doctors for America
  15. Federación Médica Colombiana (Colombia)
  16. Fundación Grupo Efecto Positivo, Argentina
  17. Fundación Ifarma (Colombia)
  18. Global Justice Now, United Kingdom
  19. Global Tuberculosis Community Advisory Board
  20. Health Action International
  21. Health Global Action Project (Health GAP)
  22. Heart to Heart Foundation, Thailand
  23. International Treatment Preparedness Coalition (ITPC)
  24. Just Treatment
  25. Knowledge Ecology International
  26. Latin American Network for the Access to Medicines (RedLAM)
  27. Lawyers Collective, India
  28. Médecins du Monde
  29. Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) Access Campaign
  30. Misión Salud (Colombia)
  31. Observatorio del Medicamento de la Federación Médica Colombiana (Colombia)
  32. Positive Malaysian Treatment Access & Advocacy Group (MTAAG+)
  33. Public Citizen
  34. Public Eye
  35. ReAct—Action on Antibiotic Resistance
  36. Salud por Derecho
  37. Salud y Farmacos USA
  38. Stichting Farma ter Verantwoording – Foundation for Pharmaceutical Accountability
  39. STOPAIDS, United Kingdom
  40. The Working Group on IP (GTPI)
  41. Third World Network
  42. Treatment Action Group (TAG)
  43. Union for Affordable Cancer Treatment
  44. Universidades Aliadas por Medicamentos Essenciais (UAEM Brasil)
  45. Universities Allied for Essential Medicines (UAEM)
  46. Wemos
  47. Women’s Coalition Against Cancer (WOCACA), Malawi
  48. Yolse
  49. Young Professionals Chronic Disease Network


Individuals (in alphabetical order)

  1. Anna Zorzet, ReAct Europe, Uppsala University
  2. Anthony D. So, ReAct Strategic Policy Program, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
  3. Arturo Quizhpe, ReAct Latin America
  4. Diane Singhroy PhD, Research Associate McGill University, Canada
  5. Dr. Mohga Kamal-Yanni, Global health and access to medicine consultant
  6. Jordan Jarvis, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine
  7. Kirsten Myhr, MScPharm, MPH, Independent access to medicines consultant, Norway
  8. Marcus Low, Spotlight, South Africa
  9. Marina Tsaplina, #insulin4all New York Chapter
  10. Mirfin Mpundu, ReAct Africa, Ecumenical Pharmaceutical Network
  11. Sujith Chandy, ReAct Asia Pacific, CMC Vellore