3 June 2024 : PIB Summary for UPSC

1. 77th World Health Assembly adopts amendments to International Health Regulations 2005 based on 300 proposals by member states

Topic: GS2 – International Relations – Important International institutions, agencies and fora – their structure, mandate.
●  The 77th World Health Assembly adopted significant amendments to the International Health Regulations (IHR 2005), enhancing global preparedness and response to health emergencies.

●  This initiative, strongly supported by India, aims to ensure equitable access to health resources and bolster capacities in developing countries.

 Analysis of the news:

  • On 1st June 2024, the 77th World Health Assembly adopted a resolution to amend the International Health Regulations (IHR 2005), based on 300 proposals from member countries post-Covid-19.
  • The amendments aim to enhance countries’ preparedness and response to Public Health Emergencies of International Concern (PHEIC) and Pandemic Emergencies (PE).
  • Key provisions include facilitating equitable access to health products during emergencies and mobilising financial resources to support developing countries in building, strengthening, and maintaining core capacities required under the IHR.
  • Shri Apurva Chandra, Secretary, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, expressed that the revisions mark a significant milestone towards global health equity and solidarity.
  • India played a crucial role in crafting the Instrument, ensuring an equitable response by developing countries to public health emergencies.
  • The negotiation process involved the Working Group on International Health Regulations (WGIHR) and the Intergovernmental Negotiating Body on the Pandemic treaty, which met over two years, facing numerous challenges.
  • The adoption of the amendments is seen as a protective measure for future generations against pandemic threats.
World Health Assembly:
Overview: The World Health Assembly (WHA) is the decision-making body of the World Health Organization (WHO).

Formation: Established in 1948, the WHA meets annually in Geneva, Switzerland.

Membership: Comprises all 194 WHO member states, each represented by a delegation.

Primary Function: Determines the policies of the WHO, approves the budget, and appoints the Director-General.

Agenda: Addresses global health issues, including disease outbreaks, health emergencies, and health promotion.

Resolutions: Adopts resolutions and decisions to guide the global health agenda and the work of WHO.

Strategic Direction: Sets international health priorities and strategic directions for WHO’s work.

Collaboration: Facilitates international cooperation on health issues, bringing together member states, non-governmental organisations, and other stakeholders.

Recent Focus Areas: COVID-19 pandemic response, vaccine equity, universal health coverage, and strengthening health systems.

PYQ: Critically examine the role of WHO in providing global health security during the Covid-19 pandemic. (150 words/10m) (UPSC CSE (M) GS-2 2020)
Practice Question:  Discuss the significance of the recent amendments to the International Health Regulations (IHR 2005) adopted by the 77th World Health Assembly. (150 Words /10 marks)

(Source – https://pib.gov.in/PressReleseDetail.aspx?PRID=2022510 )


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