The World Health Organization was established in 1948 and is composed of 193 Member States. Headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, the organization’s role is to serve as the “authority for health within the United Nations system,” and to provide “leadership on global health matters.” Current objectives of the WHO are laid out in a Six-Point Agenda aimed at responding to the challenges of an “increasingly complex and rapidly changing landscape” of global public health. The points on the agenda are: (1) promoting development; (2) fostering health security; (3) strengthening health systems; (4) harnessing research, information and evidence; (5) enhancing partnerships; and (6) improving performance.
This committee is designed for both beginners and experienced delegates alike. Position papers, although strongly recommended, are not required. However, delegates who wish to be considered for an award must submit their position papers by February 7th, 2020, at 23:59 PST. More information about position papers can be found on page 3 of the Background Guide.
Medical neutrality is the act of maintaining impartiality when dealing with medical services in times of conflict. It obligates states and various parties to protect medical professionals, patients, and facilities regardless of circumstance while ensuring unrestricted access to treatment. Because healthcare institutions are generally where vulnerable citizens gather in times of war, unwarranted attacks against medical facilities and medical personnel qualify as generalized violence in armed conflict. When such attacks occur, this dwindles already limited medical assistance and hinders the millions of civilians affected by conflict across the international stage from receiving the medical attention they need. These atrocities hinder the ability of humanitarian actors to assist conflict-ridden states in rebuilding efforts.
Pharmaceuticals are artificial substances, drugs, or chemical products created to prevent or treat illness. When pharmaceuticals are in the research and development phase, patents—the legal right to exclusively make, use, and sell a product for 20 years—are commonly used to incentivize innovation. However, during this monopoly period, because of a lack of external competition from the markets, patent holders can charge whatever price they desire for their patented products; in hiking up the price of pharmaceuticals, companies impair the economically-disadvantaged in the process. With wealth being a deciding factor in the ability for individuals to access to essential medication, the implications of a profit-oriented global pharmaceutical trade are a concern both human and health rights.
Joyce Chen | Director
Joyce is a junior at Little Flower Academy and is ecstatic to be serving as the Director of the World Health Organization at VMUN 2020. It is with immeasurable gratitude that she credits Model UN for inciting her own interest in international relations; since then, she has grown to incorporate contrasting perspectives into her worldview, to remain cognizant of issues that persist beyond her own borders, and to engender this knowledge in generations of leaders to come. Outside of the committee room, Joyce revels in listening to true crime podcasts, consuming alarming amounts of iced coffee, and getting pitiful amounts of sleep. Most of all, she excitedly awaits the nuanced and engaging debate that will take place at VMUN 2020!
Ethan Wong | Chair
Presently, Ethan is a senior attending Richmond Christian School and is elated to serve as the chair of the World Health Organization. Since his first Model UN conference captivating him in Grade 9, Ethan quickly became enthralled in international relations and early mornings of heated debate. Within the following years, Ethan has attended a deluge of Model United Nations conferences across the lower mainland, which has grown his awareness of current world detriments and foreign politics. Aside from the conference room, Ethan can be found avidly searching for new restaurants, drinking bubble tea in the late hours of the night, and struggling to maintain a consistent sleep schedule. Ethan looks forward to a weekend of insightful pragmatic debate, and is exultant to meet everyone at VMUN 2020!
Calista Lu | Assistant Director
Calista is a senior at North Surrey Secondary who’s ecstatic to serve as the Assistant Director for WHO at VMUN 2020. Beginning her MUN career in grade 10, she has been drawn into its world with the exciting topics, innovative solutions to global issues, and passionate delegates. Outside of MUN, Calista enjoys cultivating her earring addiction, wasting her money on food, reading novels, and crying over Korean dramas. She is a member of multiple charities and non-profits and also enjoys teaching piano as a part-time job. Calista looks forward to a thrilling debate with the delegates of WHO and an incredible experience together at VMUN!
Michelle Kim | Assistant Director
Currently a senior at Crofton House School, Michelle is thrilled to be serving as the Assistant Director of the World Health Organization at VMUN 2020. Despite attending her first conference in grade 9 rather reluctantly, Michelle’s passion for international relations have grown immensely in the past 3 years. Apart from MUN, Michelle can be found FaceTiming her grandma instead of studying for her math tests, singing in her bathroom, or playing with her dog. Finding herself on the Dias team of the very committee that marked her introduction to the blackhole of over-caffeination otherwise known as MUN three years back, Michelle is excited to meet all of the delegates and experience the weekend of collaboration and pragmatic discourse that is sure to occur.
You can contact the Director at firstname.lastname@example.org. Any questions regarding the committee or its debate procedures will be answered by email. Position papers must also be submitted to this address.