Ensuring Global Access to Vaccines and Medicines Overview and Resources

Ensuring Global Access to Vaccines and Medicines

According to the United Nations, major progress was achieved in improving the health of millions of people worldwide prior to the pandemic. Life expectancy and reduction of some diseases were accomplished on a global scale, but the last few years have highlighted the deficiencies that many of the world's health systems still face. While child and maternal mortality decreased, access to medicine and doctors remained an issue. Many of the problems the United Nations associate with SDG 3 still pertain to quality, availability, and accessibility.

Students assigned to this committee topic in the 2022-2023 Jr. Model United Nations - Student Diplomat Program will explore how access to medicine has expanded over time and how it can be further expanded. Students will learn about the ways in which governments, companies, and multinational institutions can work together to expand accessibility. Ultimately, students will be tasked with creating solutions that make medicines and vaccines available and accessible to all.

Topic Briefing Paper

All students assigned to this committee topic are encouraged to begin their research by reading the Council's topic briefing paper, which includes reading comprehension "Questions to Consider" and "Quick Facts" sections, in addition to a key terms and phrases Glossary. Students may then continue their committee topic and assigned country research by exploring the Additional Recommended Resources listed below. Available in January 2023!

Additional Recommended Resources

Visit the United Nations website to learn more about SDG 3 - Good Health and Wellbeing which directly relates to the Access to Vaccines and Medicines committee  topic for this year’s Jr. Model UN Program.

https://www.un.org/sustainabledevelopment/health/

SDG compass outlines required roles, key actions, tools, and indicators necessary to achieve SDG 3 targets as well as the critical role that pharmaceutical companies play in achieving this goal.

https://sdgcompass.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/Goal_3.pdf

This article is a part of the World Health organization’s COVAX initiative which aims to increase global availability to COVID-19 vaccines. The article covers the current problem surrounding vaccine distribution and solutions that are being taken to address it.

https://www.who.int/campaigns/vaccine-equity 

This article outlines the issue of access to vaccines and medicines ways and proposes a four step approach for pharmaceutical companies to work with governments to improve the situation: availability, accessibility, affordability, acceptability.

https://kids.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/frym.2020.00035

This video details the life of a vaccine from concept, to testing, to distribution, and administration.

 https://worldslargestlesson.globalgoals.org/resource/the-journey-of-a-vaccine/

This video from the United Nations talks about the disparity between vaccine access in developed and undeveloped countries and the dangers a lack of accessibility poses to the globe.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3PoNibVbfZE

This video from Yale School of Medicine speaks about the distribution and accessibility challenges the world has had and how it is  being mitigated. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7UzWijl2Xns

This World Health Organization model lists essential medicines and contains information on what they are.  It also includes a relevant database and map of countries sorted by what medicines on the list they have and what their availability is.

https://www.who.int/groups/expert-committee-on-selection-and-use-of-essential-medicines/essential-medicines-lists