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WHO member states are on the verge of finalizing the world’s first pandemic agreement.

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Member states of the World Health Organization are set to resume pandemic deal negotiations this month, ahead of the 77th World Health Assembly starting on May 27.

According to the WHO, the new developments set the process on course towards giving countries the capacity to detect and share pathogens presenting a risk, and timely access to tests, treatments, and vaccines. An agreement is meant to be reached by countries that imposed a deadline of May 2024.

WHO Chief Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus welcomed the action, saying that member states are fully aware of how important the pandemic agreement is for protecting future generations from the suffering endured through the COVID-19 pandemic.

Affirming the move, Dr. Precious Matsoso, Co-Chair of the INB Bureau, said there is clear recognition from governments that the goal of a pandemic agreement is to prepare the world for preventing and responding to future pandemics, built on consensus, solidarity, and equity.

“These goals must remain our North Star as we move toward the finalization of this historic, pressing commitment for the world,” she added.

“We know that if we fail, we will be failing humanity, including all those who suffered from COVID-19, and those at risk of future pandemics,” Dr. Matsoso said.

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