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[Comment] Sitting on the FENSA: WHO engagement with industry

When decisions are made that will impact on people’s health, who should be represented at the policy-making table? Is it sufficient to rely upon representatives from national governments, or should other stakeholders participate—and if so, to what purpose? To advise? Make decisions? Or as funders? These questions lie at the heart of a governance debate1 that has been rancorously discussed in relation to WHO for some years. In May, 2016, the World Health Assembly (WHA) reached consensus in a resolution known as FENSA (Framework of engagement with non-State actors): “WHO engages with non-State actors….to encourage [them] to…protect and promote public health”, in which non-State actors are “non-governmental organizations [NGOs], private sector entities, philanthropic foundations and academic institutions”.

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