Our mission is to inform the World Health Organization (WHO) and global community on a treaty for pandemic preparedness.
At an historic special session in December 2021, the World Health Assembly resolved to negotiate an international agreement on pandemic preparedness and response, citing the desire “for a comprehensive and coherent approach to strengthen the global health architecture” using “a whole-of-government and whole-of-society approach, prioritizing the need for equity.”
The FNIH and Georgetown University’s O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law, a WHO Collaborating Center, has convened dozens of leading experts representing every WHO region in disciplines as diverse as global health, law, human rights, biomedical science, financial services, civil society, humanitarian aid, charitable fundraising, government, patient advocacy, academia, and health equity to provide technical advice and learnings to inform WHO, policymakers, member states, and the public as the treaty is negotiated.
Convening Leading Experts
Emergency Countermeasure Development and Deployment
The O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law (O’Neill Institute), a WHO Collaborating Center, in partnership with the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health (FNIH) and the University of Cape Town (UCT) in an effort to support the World Health Assembly and the Intergovernmental Negotiating Body, convened leading authorities on the development and deployment of emergency countermeasures, namely vaccines, diagnostics, and treatments. These experts, representing every WHO region in disciplines as diverse as global health, law, human rights, biomedical science, financial services, civil society, intellectual property, the life sciences industry, clinical trial design, government, retail health, patient advocacy, the environment, academia, and health equity, collaborated to inform the WHO, policymakers, Member States, and the public as the agreement is negotiated.Learn More
Equity Models for a Pandemic Agreement
In 2023, UNAIDS joined the FNIH and the O’Neill Institute to organize an expert gathering to examine Equity Models for a Pandemic Agreement. With a new message from Dr. Tedros and WHO Intergovernmental Negotiating Body Co-Chair Precious Matsoso participating as a distinguished contributor, the meeting considered existing models in global health that assert equity as a priority and considered how they might be incorporated.Learn More
National Sovereignty Implications of a Pandemic Instrument
The second consortium, organized in 2022, analyzed the National Sovereignty Implications of a Pandemic Instrument. The convening provided insight into the range of international agreements that have been successfully deployed to coordinate international activity, the kinds of binding and non-binding elements that have been mobilized, and their impact on national sovereignty.Learn More
Legal Tools for Pandemic Preparedness
The first expert convening in 2021 examined Legal Tools for Pandemic Preparedness. Opened by WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the meeting reviewed the weaknesses and persisting gaps in global pandemic preparedness and considered what a new international agreement or instrument might include to address them.Learn More