WHO, WIPO, WTO Trilateral Cooperation on Public Health, Intellectual Property and Trade
The World Health Organization (WHO), the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) and the World Trade Organization (WTO) are strengthening their cooperation and practical coordination on issues around public health, intellectual property and trade. The WHO Global Strategy and Plan of Action on Public Health, Innovation and Intellectual Property (GSPOA), the WIPO Development Agenda and the WTO Declaration on the TRIPS agreement and public health provide the broader context for an informal and practical trilateral cooperation at the working level.
The three organizations meet regularly, exchange information on their respective work programs and discuss and plan, within the possibilities of their respective mandates and budgets, common activities. The trilateral cooperation is intended to contribute to enhancing the empirical and factual information basis for policy makers and supporting them in addressing public health in relation to intellectual property and trade.
Study: Promoting Access to Medical Technologies and Innovation
Medical technologies – medicines, vaccines and medical devices – are essential for public health. Access to essential medicines and the lack of research to address neglected diseases have been a major concern for many years. More recently, the focus of health policy debate has broadened to consider how to promote innovation and how to ensure equitable access to all vital medical technologies.
Today’s health policy-makers need a clear understanding both of the innovation processes that lead to new technologies and of the ways in which these technologies are disseminated in health systems. This study seeks to reinforce the understanding of the interplay between the distinct policy domains of health, trade and intellectual property, and of how they affect medical innovation and access to medical technologies. It captures a broad range of experience and data in dealing with the interplay between intellectual property, trade rules and the dynamics of access to, and innovation in, medical technologies. A collaborative effort by the World Health Organization, the World Intellectual Property Organization and the World Trade Organization draws together the three Secretariats’ respective areas of expertise.
The study is intended to inform ongoing technical cooperation activities undertaken by the three organizations and to support policy discussions. Based on many years of field experience in technical cooperation, the study has been prepared to serve the needs of policy-makers who seek a comprehensive presentation of the full range of issues, as well as lawmakers, government officials, delegates to international organizations, non-governmental organizations and researchers.
- Publication summary (WTO website)
- WHO, WIPO and WTO publish a study on innovation in the field of health and access to medicines (February 13, 2013)
- Launch of WHO, WIPO, WTO Study on Health Innovation and Access to Medicines (February 5, 2012)
- Fifth High-Level Symposium on Global Health Diplomacy, organized by the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Geneva (November 23, 2011)
- Access to Medicines, Patent Information and Freedom to Operate: A Joint Technical Symposium by WHO, WIPO and WTO (February 18, 2011)
- Workshop on Patent Searches and Freedom to Operate (February 17, 2011 )
- Access to Medicines: Pricing and Procurement Practices: A Joint Technical Symposium by WHO, WIPO and WTO (July 16, 2010)