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Countries at odds over how to reignite pandemic agreement

34 Comments
By Robin MILLARD

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The proposed amendments include reforming the alert system so there are more, and clearer, levels of alarm.

This is probably one of the least problematic parts of the agreements, the problem is about the responsibilities of the countries (and as importantly) the international companies once the highest levels of alarm are declared. Putting economic profit above any kind of public health benefits is what make participants refrain from accepting the conditions that are necessary to make the agreements useful.

Another complication is both antivaxxers (and other antiscientific propaganda groups) and "big pharma" are both fully against making vaccines available at cost for developing countries.

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Many are skeptical of the proposed agreement for a number of reasons. There is increasing distrust in the WHO because of how they dealt with the recent pandemic and their sources of funding. Adding to this distrust is it's chief scientist Dr. Farrar with the recent revelations of his involvement in hiding the origins of SARS-CoV2.

I am very distrustful of the WHO and I want them to have less power/influence, not more.

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Many are skeptical of the proposed agreement for a number of reasons

Unfortunately most of those reasons are invalid or based on personal profit instead of actual interest of protecting public health from the next pandemic.

There is increasing distrust in the WHO because of how they dealt with the recent pandemic and their sources of funding.

That makes no sense since the vast majority of the problems the WHO had to deal with were caused precisely because of the reduction of power it was subjected from 15 years ago, which the agreement is supposed to correct.

Adding to this distrust is it's chief scientist Dr. Farrar with the recent revelations of his involvement in hiding the origins of SARS-CoV2.

Irrational conspiracies that are impossible according to the huge amount of evidence that clearly points out to the natural origin of the virus are not an argument either, the ones trying to hide this natural origin are the ones that have been exposed as deeply antiscientific and motivated by the desire to acquire influence, money or power by going against the scientific consensus.

There is no mystery in people with a deep and systematic antiscientific bias opposing scientific institutions (specially global authorities) from reaching the necessary agreements to do their function properly. The interest of those people is not about the progress of humanity, but personal benefit.

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Good and good.

Let's hope a one size fits all policy for Global Health ran by a nontrustable, unelected, made-up Organization , giving itself over-reaching powers and unquestionable directives - never becomes a reality.

That would make for a sicker world indeed.

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Let's hope a one size fits all policy for Global Health ran by a nontrustable, unelected, made-up Organization , giving itself over-reaching powers and unquestionable directives - never becomes a reality.

Fortunately the agreement is nothing like the misrepresentation you make, in reality the current situation is what is much more unjust, opaque and difficult to question. There is a reason why transnational companies and autocratic governments are the first to oppose the agreements and developing countries on the other side are urging the international community to take responsibility and sign already.

When you are on the side of politicians and rich CEOs against the poor people of the world it also becomes clear you are all for a sicker world instead of progress.

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Most people who are aware of this are against it because they do not want to give up their country's sovereignty to this untrustworthy and privately-funded group. It is not because they "are on the side of politicians and rich CEOs against the poor people". In fact, those who oppose the agreement tend to be the most against politicians and rich CEOs, and vice versa.

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Most people who are aware of this are against it because they do not want to give up their country's sovereignty to this untrustworthy and privately-funded group

That is a non-argument since there is no need to give up any sovereignty and the WHO is a well trusted organization, enough for most of the public health systems in the world to work with it and use their guidelines, rules, etc. to the benefit of the population. This is just an obvious misrepresentation of the agreement used by antiscientific propaganda groups, again to the benefit of multinational companies that are actually the ones that would lose a lot of the advantages they currently enjoy in case of a pandemic.

 It is not because they "are on the side of politicians and rich CEOs against the poor people"

In a practical sense, that is precisely what they are doing, using misrepresentations like the one you wrote as an excuse to oppose rules that would only be detrimental to companies and unethical politicians.

In fact, those who oppose the agreement tend to be the most against politicians and rich CEOs, and vice versa.

Not at all, as the own article here describes, with most of the people that would benefit from developing countries being extremely supportive.

The people that most openly oppose the agreement are the same people that oppose every other scientific and medical authorities when they recommend something for the benefit of the people that need the most protection. Be it effective medical interventions, climate change control measures, control over false medical claims etc. In general just the same antiscientific groups.

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That makes no sense since the vast majority of the problems the WHO had to deal with were caused precisely because of the reduction of power it was subjected from 15 years ago, which the agreement is supposed to correct.

The WHO group never had any power to begin with.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

The WHO group never had any power to begin with.

According to which public health institution?

None? that is because this claim is false, being the global authority in public health comes with a lot of responsibilities and the power to fulfill that role. It is the organization that is in charge of organizing the international response to global health threats, no other organization has as much power to do anything in this respect as the WHO does.

The problem is that personal economic and political interests try to limit as much as possible this power and use antiscientific propaganda groups to reach that goal.

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The WHO group never had any power to begin with.

Yes, but they tried to sneak in an agreement that would make their declarations and recommendations binding. Luckily, it did not pass.

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Yes, but they tried to sneak in an agreement that would make their declarations and recommendations binding. Luckily, it did not pass.

Very true.

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Yes, but they tried to sneak in an agreement that would make their declarations and recommendations binding. Luckily, it did not pass.

What do you think the whole point of the agreement is? to let the WHO say things even if it carries no weight and nobody has to be responsible for their actions? that is even worse than the current situation right now.

It is like saying that the police is trying to "sneak in" payable penalties in parking fines, that is the main purpose.

Very true.

On the opposite, that is not some kind of hidden agenda or conspiracy, as the article clearly points out the agreement is to make countries take responsibility when public health is involved.

It even explicitly says so:

*countries have spent two years trying to reach binding commitments for tackling future pandemics.*

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

countries have spent two years trying to reach binding commitments for tackling future pandemics.

Yeah, they might have been open about binding commitments regarding "vaccine equity", they they were not so open about giving the WHO the right to arbitrarily declare a pandemic and impose mandates and lock-downs.

It is like saying that the police is trying to "sneak in" payable penalties in parking fines, that is the main purpose.

Yeah, but imagine a police authority that is lead, advised, and funded by unscrupulous people, and they want the right to arbitrarily determine where and when people can park anywhere in the world.

No thanks!

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Yeah, they might have been open about binding commitments regarding "vaccine equity", they they were not so open about giving the WHO the right to arbitrarily declare a pandemic and impose mandates and lock-downs.

The countries are openly, loudly discussing what kinds of actions they are going to support themselves in case of a pandemic, they are not being forced to do it, when a country freely decides to do something as long as the global public health authority declares a pandemic that is not losing their rights, it is about using them. There is zero hidden discussions about it, the whole point is that some countries are very vocal about not assuming their responsibilities by being manipulated by corrupt politicians and billionaires, which are the ones that lose if the world have better public health.

Yeah, but imagine a police authority that is lead, advised, and funded by unscrupulous people, and they want the right to arbitrarily determine where and when people can park anywhere in the world.

That would still make the "sneak in" part terribly wrong, and showing deep ignorance about the whole topic as well.

Not to mention, that the WHO is a well recognized global authority that is respected by public health related organizations around the world, enough for those organizations to base a lot of their practices in what the WHO has to say.

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Not to mention, that the WHO is a well recognized global authority that is respected by public health related organizations around the world, enough for those organizations to base a lot of their practices in what the WHO has to say.

Yeah, it is "respected" by other equally captured organizations.

Just look at the past history of its Director-General (Tedros) and its Chief Scientist (Farrar). It is clear today that Farrar knowingly tried to deceive the world into believing that SARS-CoV2 emerged naturally. We know today through released Emails that they knew about its lab origins.... And look at who is funding the WHO.

These are the people who want to arbitrarily declare pandemics and impose world-wide binding lock downs and mandates....

No thanks!

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Yeah, it is "respected" by other equally captured organizations.

By the medical and scientific community of the world, again pretending everybody is in a global conspiracy just because you refuse to accept the very clear value of scientific facts do not make that claim less unbelievable. Either all the professionals that have dedicated their lives to protect public health are wrong or you are. Since you never provide any evidence of that supposed conspiracy that means the answer is crystal clear. The only people that can believe millions of professionals are corrupt and would sacrifice their friends and family health and lives for money are people that actually would do that, so they thing this is a normal choice that anybody else would also do. For rational people this is obviously impossible to believe.

It is clear today that Farrar knowingly tried to deceive the world into believing that SARS-CoV2 emerged naturally. 

No, you believe that by misrepresenting what actually happen. Scientists on the other hand have proved beyond any rational doubt that covid appeared naturally, and there has been no rebuke of the clear scientific evidence of this.

We know today through released Emails that they knew about its lab origins

That is still completely false as the last time you made that claim, professionals were open to all possibilities at the beginning, but when the evidence clearly pointed out to the natural origin then that is what the conclusions were going to be.

And look at who is funding the WHO.

Who? the country that the WHO have repeatedly and strongly criticized for how it managed to fumble the pandemic both at the beginning and when it irrationally insisted on not focusing in the vaccines? that conspiracy is another thing that falls flat for anybody that has ever followed the news.

These are the people who want to arbitrarily declare pandemics and impose world-wide binding lock downs and mandates.

Still false, you choose not to argue this point when it was demonstrated false, countries are the ones deciding what is what they will assume as a responsibility, nobody is arbitrarily imposing anything. Your misrepresentation has already been debunked and you could not defend it, why repeat it? that does not make it less wrong.

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None? that is because this claim is false, being the global authority in public health comes with a lot of responsibilities and the power to fulfill that role.

The WHO has none, and never had any power.

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The WHO has none, and never had any power.

Of course it does, it is the global authority on public health and it coordinates and puts forward international actions in cases where public health is involved. The changes are meant to make these actions more efficient, but pretending the WHO has no power is just a false claim easily disproved by the available evidence.

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In blatant disregard for established protocol and procedures, the agreement was amended behind closed doors and accepted by the WHO assembly late Saturday night!

According to their own rules and regulations for amending the IHR:

“the text of any proposed amendment shall be communicated to all States Parties by the Director-General at least four months before the Health Assembly at which it is proposed for consideration”

They can't even follow their own rules, and they want us to trust them with our health!

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They can't even follow their own rules, and they want us to trust them with our health!

Completely misrepresenting the rules means you already understand there is no valid criticism so the only option you have left is to pretend rules made to modify agreed upon health regulations magically apply as well for something that has not been even agreed yet.

There is a huge difference between making a modification to something without opening the full Health regulations for discussion (for which the period makes complete sense) and making modifications to a proposal that depends on changing the regulations as a whole.

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Who still trusts the WHO?

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Who still trusts the WHO?

Public health services all over the world, hundreds of institutions of medicine and science, countless professionals that work every day to preserve the health of their patients?

Countries all around the world use information, scientific studies, guidelines, etc. originated from the WHO, that would mean it is still a source of information about public health that is well trusted.

The only people that claim the contrary are the same that say similar things about every other scientific institution of the world, antivaxxers, climate change denialists, fflat-earthers, etc.

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Public health services all over the world, hundreds of institutions of medicine and science, countless professionals that work every day to preserve the health of their patients?

So the same people who told us to lock down for "two weeks" to "lower the curve". And silenced any scientists who said otherwise. And censored years old studies showing that lockdowns and masks would not work. AND, outright declared basic knowledge of illnesses one learns in grade schools are now "incorrect".

I guess I should revise my question and ask who trusts so-called "medical professionals" anymore?

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Who still trusts the WHO?

Can you show any organizations that are not far-right that have expressed a distrust for the WHO?

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So the same people who told us to lock down for "two weeks" to "lower the curve". 

Something that has been demonstrated to actually lower the risk and prevented millions of deaths, of course for people that prioritize personal commodities above the life of others this has no importance.

And silenced any scientists who said otherwise. 

No silencing, simply making obvious when unprofessional people made baseless claims that were easily demonstrated as false, people who lie should be made responsible for those lies, specially if they should know better.

And censored years old studies showing that lockdowns and masks would not work. 

No such things, lockdowns and masks (as well as other measures to isolate) have been shown to work since centuries in the past. That is the whole point of quarantines. Scientific studies from the pandemic simply confirmed that this actually prevent infections, hospitalizations and deaths, again.

AND, outright declared basic knowledge of illnesses one learns in grade schools are now "incorrect".

Not at all, but making obvious when antiscientific propaganda groups tried to mislead people with terribly incorrect "interpretations" of knowledge of all levels is something completely positive.

I guess I should revise my question and ask who trusts so-called "medical professionals" anymore?

Anybody intellectually honest would do that when confronted with the reality that the whole scientific and medical communities of the world say that what you personally believe is wrong. Other people will keep insisting that baseless claims they want to believe must be true no matter what, and that professionals that know best in every country on the world are all wrong, just because "dude, trust me".

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Can you show any organizations that are not far-right

Can you actually the class what "Far Right" even means?

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Can you actually the class what "Far Right" even means?

Yes, those that express views on the far right of the political spectrum.

if you give me some links I’ll be happy to tell you whether they’re far right or not.

I only ask because I don’t partake of extremist media, and I’ve never seen any reputable organization express distrust of the WHO, but I’m open to my just not having seen it. So I’m sure you can provide some links to non-far right organizations expressing distrust of the WHO right?

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Something that has been demonstrated to actually lower the risk and prevented millions of deaths

Until things opened up, then deaths and infections skyrocketed. Not counting the deaths that occurred due to people refusing to call medical services since they didn't want to be a nuisance to the hospitals filled with dancing nurses. And all those territories like the Amish and Sweden that had the lowest death count despite never locking down.

No silencing

https://archive.ph/TI7oe

No such things

https://archive.ph/nhdMX

https://archive.ph/ebw1C

Not at all

So, my body DOESN'T create antibodies as a result of it encountering an unknown illness in my system, with said antibodies then making me more resistant against said illness in the future?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

those that express views on the far right of the political spectrum

Such as...?

if you give me some links I’ll be happy to tell you whether they’re far right or not.

So it's a subjective measurement? You cannot actually tell me what are the characteristics and traits of what does and doesn't makes a viewpoint "Far Right"?

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They can't even follow their own rules, and they want us to trust them with our health!

Completely misrepresenting the rules means you already understand there is no valid criticism so the only option you have left is to pretend rules made to modify agreed upon health regulations magically apply as well for something that has not been even agreed yet.

I did not "misrepresent", their own rules and regulations clearly refer to "the text of any proposed amendment"

Your comment that the amendments in question do not apply has no basis.

If you really believe the amendments in question do not apply, you should be able to quote the section in their rules and regulations that states this.

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Until things opened up, then deaths and infections skyrocketed.

Wich still contradicts what you claimed, you are refuting your own claim. Strict isolation was from the very beginning something that could not be maintained permanently but instead something to do to get enough time for vaccines and better treatments to work, which worked very nicely, rates of hospitalizations and deaths per infection were incomparably lower after vaccines could be used on the populations, so the purpose of the isolation was accomplished, since it was (as you now recognize) something very effective even if impossible to become a permanent situation.

Not counting the deaths that occurred due to people refusing to call medical services since they didn't want to be a nuisance to the hospitals filled with dancing nurses.

How many deaths, how many hospitals 2? 3?, making absurd arguments means you ran out of anything remotely rational to use.

And all those territories like the Amish and Sweden that had the lowest death count despite never locking down.

Completely false, not only because of course there was isolation, but also because even in Sweden it was recognized that more isolation would have prevented much more deaths, and of course because this "argument" depends on lack of forced isolation as if it was the same as no isolation, which is not true. That would be like saying the population in Japan didn't use masks since there was never a mask mandate. Obviously false.

https://archive.ph/TI7oe

Yes, no silencing, no censoring, no change of basic knowledge. When the best reference you can get is from an institution well known to lie, misrepresent and hide information you are also accepting that you could not get any respectable institution to support your claim, zero, from any and all countries in the world you could only get a well known source of disinformation as your only source.

https://www.medpagetoday.com/special-reports/exclusives/95601

https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/5050/us-conservatives-spread-anti-vaccine-covid-misinformation-uganda/

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1057/s41271-023-00451-4

https://archive.ph/nhdMX

Again, no censoring. Your claim was that supposedly studies showed something already demonstrated as false (that masks don't prevent transmission) and were systematically censored, yet you can only bring a source where one single study failed to find something that was later proved. That is what science do continuously, improve and collect better evidence in order to bring progress. There was no censoring, in fact that was widely recognized at the beginning of the pandemic by all institutions, that LATER evidence clearly proved masks were part of the isolation measures that worked preventing cases, hospitalization and deaths made the recommendations change, which ended up preventing millions of deaths, once again contradicting your original claim.

https://archive.ph/ebw1C

This is even worse as a source, the quotes do not support the conclusions made in the article, and the actual quotes are about lack of evidence for specific recommendations, absolutely no rewriting of any basic knowledge. Specially because it has been proved beyond any rational doubt the measures actually worked

So, my body DOESN'T create antibodies as a result of it encountering an unknown illness in my system, with said antibodies then making me more resistant against said illness in the future?

Yes, but when your body creates antibodies as a result of a vaccine then the same protection is reached without the high risk of complications, hospitalization and death. There was no rewriting, just debunking of false arguments made by people.

*I did not "misrepresent", their own rules and regulations clearly refer to "the text of any proposed amendment"*

Again, this is for proposals to amendments to an agreement already achieved, not to a completely new agreement that has not been decided yet. That is the part where you completely misrepresent the rule. This is not a minor modification to something that is already fixed, but instead to something that will still need to be discussed and negotiated.

Yours is the claim that has no basis. You don't even make an effort to refute the fact that the rule is for agreements already done, by pretending this is one you make it obvious you are trying to mislead people into thinking this is a done deal and the modification would be the only ones that would need to be decided, which is of course not the case.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

So it's a subjective measurement?

Nope, it’s evaluated objectively based on the degree to which the site expresses far right ideals.

That all said, the question was whether anyone still believed the WHO. But back in the non-far-right m-extremist world, no one is expressing doubt of the WHO. The inability to provide a single link proves that.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

What "ideals"? What makes something "Far Right"?

Am I supposed to pretend this is not a deflection from providing even a single link to show a respectable organization that has expressed doubt of the WHO?

Remember, this was the claim:

Who still trusts the WHO?

I'm just calling out a comment clearly only based in far-right extremist "reality".

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

The real question is, who DOESN'T trust the WHO?

Far-right extremists. That's who.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

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