July 5, 2023Read the Publication
United Nations (UN) States are expected to adopt a political declaration on the fight against tuberculosis during the high-level meeting to be held in September 2023. In May 2023 the co-facilitators of the intergovernmental consultation circulated a Zero Draft for a prospective political declaration on the fight against tuberculosis. Negotiations are now underway.
A wide variety of international documents have addressed critical issues in public health, human rights, recognition of populations made vulnerable by law or policy, and access to medicines. The HIV Language Compendium (HIVLanguageCompendium.org) compiles “agreed language” on a set of key contentious issues – illustrating that there exists strong consensus and political settlement on many of these issues. Based on these elements from international instruments, sources, and agreements, our analysis proposes improvements that could be reflected in the final political declaration on tuberculosis to make it as bold as other declarations in selected areas.
While strong in some aspects, ongoing drafts of the political declaration do not yet reflect internationally agreed terms in some important areas. Multiple international documents have called for community-led monitoring of health responses. Contrary to these precedents, some stakeholders are opposed to recognizing the importance and commuting to implement “community-led” monitoring to improve social accountability. Some stakeholders are also opposed to language relating to health and human rights that have been widely recognized in international documents. Given that public and philanthropic institutions represent a large portion of funding for tuberculosis research and development, States should also commit to embedding strong contractual conditionalities to ensure access. States should also urge avoiding international agreements that restrict maneuvering space for implementing intellectual property flexibilities. The final political declaration would be stronger if concrete and actionable commitment to explore, support, and implement delinkage incentive models are adopted.