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May 13, 2022

GHTC submitted the following statement online as part of the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) 75th World Health Assembly (WHA) stakeholder listening session in response to a draft WHA resolution proposed by the United Kingdom:

While the pandemic has disrupted and delayed many research activities, it has also highlighted the importance of quality clinical trials in responding to public health threats nationally, regionally, and globally. Leaders recognize the need for additional investment, new capacities, and reform of existing systems to create a stronger enabling environment for research and development (R&D) in low- and middle-income countries. As countries seek to develop a more responsive and resilient global health architecture, it is vital to bolster regionally distributed clinical trial capacity. This resolution on strengthening clinical trials to improve public health is a strong first step, taking concrete action to facilitate investment in high-quality clinical trials, adopt robust clinical trial standards in routine practice to expedite the development of effective health care interventions, and develop the governance infrastructure to support enhanced collaboration and coordination between nations.  

We urge the United States to support the resolution and to: 

  1. Endorse the provision in the resolution calling for grant funding for clinical trials to be linked to required use of standard data protocols where available. 

  2. Work with the World Health Organization and other member states to support the provision highlighting the need for data sharing between regulatory authorities to speed up and harmonize clinical trial approvals in other countries. 

  3. Support greater clinical trial capacity globally through investment and technical support, enabling a greater number of clinical trial sites in lower- and middle-income countries and more readily coordinating activity between existing and new clinical trial networks. 

  4. Elevate the Global Health Security Agenda as a platform where lower- and middle-income countries can articulate investment opportunities, highlight bottlenecks, share best practices, and align around R&D capacity assessment needs.