The leaked record of the five meetings of the UK–US Trade & Investment Working Group held in 2017–18 has led to a controversy in the UK election campaign around the claim that ‘the NHS is up for sale’.
But a careful reading of the leaked documents reveals how remarkably little concerns the NHS – in five meetings over 16 months, the NHS is mentioned just four times. The patent regime and how it affects medicines is discussed in more depth but largely in terms of the participants trying to understand each other’s systems and perspectives. For the most part, the discussions were overwhelmingly about everything else a trade deal would cover other than healthcare – matters such as subsidies, rules of origin and customs facilitation.… Seguir leyendo »
Until now the World Health Organization’s (WHO) member states elected a new director-general entirely in secret. In the last contested election in 2006, the names of the candidates were publicly announced but the shortlisting by the WHO’s 34-member executive board, and its nomination for the next director-general, were held in private. The board’s single nomination was then endorsed by the World Health Assembly (WHA), consisting of representatives of all the WHO’s 194 member states.
This time the procedure has been substantially revised, based on the deliberations of a member state working group established in 2011. There is a new code of conduct for the election process emphasising greater transparency, including, for instance, member states ‘considering’ disclosing contributions to their candidate’s election campaign.… Seguir leyendo »