General Conference Resolution Endorses PACT

16 November 2007

Member States at this year's IAEA General Conference demonstrated their growing confidence in PACT, hailing its work as a clear example of the Agency's mandate to promote the peaceful use of nuclear technology for humanitarian purposes. Citing the reasons for PACT's establishment — the dramatic increase in the number of cancer cases, particularly in developing countries, and the suffering of cancer patients and their families — the General Conference reiterated its conviction that PACT's efforts to develop comprehensive cancer strategies will benefit health systems in all regions.

The 21 paragraphs of Resolution GC(51)/RES/14/A.2 represent a commendation of the progress achieved by IAEA in its PACT initiative and broad support and encouragement for the road ahead. Clearly, PACT's blueprint for the future is centred on its growing network of public-private partnerships with international cancer organisations, Member States and other stakeholders. Recognising this, the General Conference noted the May 2007 World Health Assembly's acknowledgement of the IAEA's role in fighting cancer and, through PACT, its growing collaboration with WHO Regional Offices.

The decision to include PACT in the Agency's Human Health programme, with provision in the Regular Budget to cover some of PACT's funding requirements, was welcomed by delegates. While at the same time, the General Conference expressed appreciation for the financial and other contributions, offers and pledges made by Member States and others to the PACT initiative, it strongly encouraged all donors and Member States to contribute in cash and in-kind to PACT. The ongoing work of the PACT Programme Office (PPO) to use non-traditional sources in support of its activities, including online donation and the establishment of an endowment fund, received special commendation.

The General Conference also recognised PACT's three-pronged implementation strategy starting with imPACT Missions for assessing and planning effective national cancer control programmes, developing the Model Demonstration Sites (PMDS), and establishing regional Cancer Training Networks for health professionals. Based on collaborative efforts with PACT's partner organizations, the strategy is designed to demonstrate the value of an integrated, comprehensive approach to strengthening Member States' capabilities to fight cancer.

While urging the Director General to advocate and build support for PACT as one of the Agency's priorities, the General Conference also encouraged PACT to continue its efforts to raise awareness of the growing cancer burden in low and middle-income countries and to use all tools at its disposal including local, national and international media to meet this objective.