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Health assembly adopts COVID-19 resolution calling for patent pools

The WHO’s decision-making body adopted a sweeping resolution this week aimed at unifying the global response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The U.S. was not one of the more than 130 countries that co-sponsored the World Health Assembly’s resolution, which retained language from an earlier draft that called for member states to pool IP for, and ensure access to, COVID-19 countermeasures (see “World Leaders Call for Pooling Resources”).

The resolution, which was adopted by consensus Tuesday, calls for “universal, timely and equitable access to and fair distribution of all quality, safe, efficacious and affordable essential health technologies and products,” as well as the “voluntary pooling and licensing of patents to facilitate timely, equitable and affordable access.”

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