Detail of a box of vaccines
6 May 2016

Global Health Security Agenda

Implementation of international health regulations, with robust, transparent global governance, is a priority for France. It particularly supports the creation of a health crisis response platform, and has taken the initiative of mobilising the G7 on the issue of the cost of innovative medicines.
Content published under the Government Valls III from 2016 11th February to 2016 06th December
The prestigious British medical journal, The Lancet, has published a special edition on the excellence of France’s health cover. This reaffirms the duty to ensure the universal right to health for all people. Significantly, 16,000 children die each day worldwide from preventable diseases such as measles and tuberculosis. Hundreds of women die during pregnancy or as a result of complications related to giving birth, and in poor countries, chronic diseases, cardiovascular and respiratory diseases and diabetes are responsible for over half of all deaths.
It is possible to reduce these scourges through political will. France will continue to lead on this front:
  • In 2015 it committed over €1bn to health development aid.
  • Since 2007, it has invested €1.1bn in UNITAID, to which it is the biggest contributor, and has given €4.4bn to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.
  • France also acts in acute crisis situations such as the Ebola crisis in Guinea previously and currently in combating the Zika virus.
In confronting these health crises, future priorities have been set, particularly in terms of:
  • improving monitoring, alert and diagnostic instruments worldwide with the new Public Health Agency created in France; 
  • managing crises by scaling up the role of civil society, local experts and the populations concerned whilst increasing dedicated financing;
  • providing financial support for life, human and social sciences.
The need to implement international health regulations and robust, transparent global governance must also be given attention. Accordingly, France supports the creation of a global health emergency preparedness and response platform, for which the WHO office in Lyon could play a pivotal role.
Additionally, France is keen to fight the prohibitive costs of certain new medications whilst promoting innovation so that genuinely universal health cover can be provided. For this reason, it has taken the initiative of mobilising the G7: for the first time this year, a meeting of health ministers from the world’s seven richest nations is set to begin dialogue and coordination between regulatory authorities, the pharmaceutical industry and patients. This supply-side action on treatment provision will be accompanied by a determined effort to ensure effective access to treatment by patients. France is already involved in this field, for example through its support of free treatment policies for children under five in four countries of Africa’s Sahel region.