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Draft Resolution: Enhancing capacity-building in global public health
(Agenda Item 120, 60th Session of GA)


The General Assembly
,

Recalling the United Nations Millennium Declaration, adopted at the Millennium Summit of the United Nations, and the development goals contained therein, in particular the health-related development goals, and its resolutions 58/3 of 27 October 2003 and 59/27 of 23 November 2004,

Recalling also the 2005 World Summit Outcome adopted by heads of state and government at the High-Level Plenary Meeting of the 60th Session of the General Assembly held in New York from 14th to 16th September 2005, including the commitments on HIV/AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis and other health issues,

Recognizing that health is central to achievement of the internationally agreed development goals, including all those contained in the United Nations Millennium Declaration, and that such goals create an opportunity to position health as a core part of the development agenda and to raise political commitment and financial resources for the sector,

Noting with concern the deleterious impact on humankind of HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria, and other major infectious diseases and epidemics, and the heavy disease burden borne by poor people, especially in developing countries, including the least developed countries, as well as countries with economies in transition, and in this regard noting with appreciation the work of the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS, its co-sponsoring agencies and the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria,

Also noting with concern the serious damage and loss of life caused by natural disasters and their negative impact on public health and health systems,

Bearing in mind the fact that the fight against new and re-emerging diseases such as the severe acute respiratory syndrome and a human influenza pandemic arising from avian influenza is far from over, and in this regard welcoming the efforts of the World Health Organization, the Food and Agriculture Organization and the World Organization for Animal Health in developing international strategies and collaboration as well as the recent appointment of a Senior UN System Coordinator for Avian and Human Influenza by the Secretary General,

Emphasizing that Member States have primary responsibility for strengthening their capacity-building in public health to detect and respond rapidly to outbreaks of major infectious diseases, through the establishment and improvement of effective public health mechanisms, while recognizing that the magnitude of necessary response may be beyond the capabilities of many countries, in particular developing countries as well as countries with economies in transition,

Convinced that strengthening public health systems is critical to the development of all Member States, and that economic and social development are enhanced through measures that strengthen capacity-building in public health, including strategies for training, recruitment and retention of sufficient public health personnel and systems of prevention and of immunization against infectious diseases,

Acknowledging that rapid progress will require political commitment and a scaling-up of more efficient and effective strategies and actions, greater investment of financial resources, adequately staffed and effective health systems, capacity building in the public and private sectors, a clear focus on equity in access and outcomes, and collective action within and between countries,

Recognizing the need to strengthen national health and social infrastructures to reinforce measures to eliminate discrimination in access to public health, information and education for all people, and especially for the most underserved and vulnerable groups,

Recognizing the need for greater international and regional cooperation to meet new and existing challenges to public health, in particular in promoting effective measures such as safe, affordable and accessible vaccines, as well as assisting developing countries in securing vaccines against preventable infectious diseases and supporting the development of new vaccines,

Welcoming the Doha Declaration on the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of intellectual Property Rights and Public Health, adopted on 14 November 2001, and noting the decision of the World Trade Organization General Council of 30 August 2003 on the implementation of paragraph 6 of the Doha Declaration,

Recognizing also the expertise of the World Health Organization and its role in, inter alia, coordinating actions with Member States in the areas of information exchange, personnel training, technical support, resource utilization, the improvement of global public health preparedness and response mechanisms and stimulating and advancing work on the prevention, control and eradication of epidemic, endemic and other diseases, as well as the work of the World Health Organization office dedicated to communicable diseases surveillance and response,

Welcoming the efforts of the World Health Organization, in cooperation with Member States, the United Nations system, the Bretton Woods institutions, the private sector and civil society, in enhancing capacity-building in global public health and in promoting public health at the country level,

Underscoring the importance of the International Health Regulations (2005) adopted by Resolution 58.3 on 23 May 2005 at the 58th World Health Assembly, as an instrument for ensuring the maximum possible protection against the international spread of diseases with minimum interference in international traffic,

l. Urges Member States to further integrate public health into their national economic and social development strategies, including through the establishment and improvement of effective public health mechanisms, in particular networks of disease surveillance, response, control, prevention, treatment and information exchange and the recruitment and training of national public health personnel;

2. Urges Member States and the international community to increase investment, building on existing mechanisms and through partnership, to improve health systems in developing countries and those with economies in transition with the aim of providing sufficient health workers, infrastructures, management systems and supplies to achieve the health-related Millennium Development Goals by 2015;

3. Calls upon Member States and the international community to take action, as appropriate, to address shortages of human resources for health, by inter alia, developing, financing and implementing policies, within national development strategies, to improve training and management and effectively govern the recruitment, retention, and deployment of health workers;

4. Calls upon Member States and the international community to raise awareness of good public health practices, including through education and the mass media;

5. Emphasizes the importance of active international cooperation in the control of infectious diseases, based on the principles of mutual respect and equality, with a view to strengthening capacity-building in public health, especially in developing countries, including through the exchange of information and the sharing of experience, as well as research and training programmes focusing on surveillance, prevention, control, response, and care and treatment in respect of infectious diseases, and vaccines against them;

6. Calls for the improvement of the global public health preparedness and response systems, including systems of prevention and monitoring of infectious diseases, to better cope with major diseases, in particular a pandemic of human influenza arising from avian influenza;

7. Recognizes World Health Assembly resolution WHA 58.5 on strengthening pandemic-influenza preparedness and response, and in this regard calls upon Member States to develop, implement and strengthen their national response plans, welcomes the ongoing collaboration across multiple fora to address issues to further national efforts and international cooperation on preparedness, contingency planning, and response and containment of avian and pandemic influenza, and takes note of with interest the initiative of the International Partnership on Avian and Pandemic Influenza and its core principles;

8. Calls upon Member States to take all appropriate measures for furthering the purpose and eventual implementation of the International Health Regulations (2005) adopted at the 58th World Health Assembly in May 2005, pending their entry into force, including development of the necessary public health capacities, development of legal and administrative provisions, and encourages their implementation of the International Health Regulations as early as possible, and support for the Global Outbreak Alert and Response Network of the World Health Organization;

9. Encourages Member States to participate actively in the verification and validation of surveillance data and information concerning public health emergencies of international concern and, in close collaboration with the World Health Organization, to exchange information and experience in a timely and open manner on epidemics and the prevention and control of emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases that pose a risk to global public health;

10. Urges Member States and the international community to promote long-term funding, including public-private partnerships where appropriate, for academic and industrial research as well as for the development of new vaccines and microbicides, diagnostic kits, drugs and treatments to address major pandemics, tropical diseases and other diseases, such as avian influenza and severe acute respiratory syndrome, and taking forward work on market incentives where appropriate through such mechanisms as advance purchase commitments;

11. Stresses the importance of enhancing international cooperation in the area of public health in the aftermath of natural disasters to support national efforts in order to cope in all phases of the response, and urges Member States and the international community to strengthen their cooperation programs preparedness, mitigation, response and recovery in this regard;

12. Invites the regional commissions of the Economic and Social Council, as appropriate, to cooperate closely with Member States, the private sector and civil society, when requested, in their capacity-building in public health, as well as in regional cooperation to diminish and eliminate the deleterious impact of major infectious diseases;

13. Encourages Member States, as well as United Nations agencies, bodies, funds and programmes, in accordance with their respective mandates, to continue to address public health concerns in their development activities and programmes, and to actively support capacity-building in global public health and health-care institutions, such as through the provision of technical and other relevant assistance to the developing countries, as well as countries with economies in transition;

14. Requests the Secretary-General to submit to the General Assembly at its sixty-first session a report on the implementation of the present resolution.


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