By Dr Katherine Pettus

Just after midnight on March 22 in Vienna, the Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) adopted the Outcome Document to be presented to UN member states who will attend the General Assembly on the World Drug Problem (UNGASS) scheduled for April 19-21 in New York City.

This article summarises the main points of the Outcome Document and the CND session relating to controlled medicines.

The document contains a set of well worded recommendations to assist countries in improving access to controlled essential medicines for “the relief of pain and suffering.” 

Finding consensus

Since the CND works by consensus rather than by vote, member states with different points of view about an issue have to work together to draft language that suits the interests of all.

A lot of discussion took place over the language in the controlled medicines section of the outcome document, according to member state colleagues who were in the room and reported back (only member states can attend the “informal” sessions where language is crafted and agreed upon). 

Click here to read the full article.            

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Thumbnail: Flickr Alan Levine