9º World Congress on Health Information and Libraries

Salvador, Bahia - Brazil, September, 20 to 23 - 2005


4th Regional Coordination Meeting of the VHL

September, 19 to 20 - 2005

Declaration of Salvador - Commitment to Equity

Declaration of Salvador - Commitment to Equity

WE, the participants in the Ninth World Congress on Health Information and Libraries and Seventh Regional Congress of Information in Health Sciences (ICML9/CRICS7), gathered in Salvador, Bahia, Brazil, from September 19 to 23, 2005

Taking into consideration,

That equity in access and mastering of information and knowledge is an essential condition for improving the health and quality of life of individuals and communities,

That in the absence of public policies specifically aimed to overcome them, the inequities in access of information and knowledge have the tendency to persist, to increase and to generate other inequities detrimental to the health and well-being of societies,

That information and knowledge are global public goods whose universal and equitable production and circulation to overcome regional inequities require the improvement and establishment of new norms and institutional arrangements of the international community, particularly the United Nations agencies,

That health institutions and services are social and cultural assets of the people to whose needs they should respond, with the highest quality both technical and human,



To define policies, norms and programs aimed to:

  • promote broad and equitable access to national and international sources of information and knowledge, strengthening the necessary infrastructure through movements such as "open access";
  • establish solutions that respond to the needs of broad and equitable access to goods and services of information and intellectual property rights;
  • strengthen health systems and services to enable the access and application of knowledge in an efficient, effective and socially just manner,

International Organizations

To define their technical cooperation programs aimed at promoting a global commitment with equitable access to information and knowledge, coherent with the Millennium Development Goals and support national governments in their efforts to transform this commitment into reality;

We pledge

To persevere in the endeavor to construct and maintain spaces and opportunities to strengthen and establish international collaborative networks such as the Virtual Health Library, similar initiatives from other regions and the Global Health Library, in order to promote the dialogue among different knowledge entities and the production, flow and exchange of information and knowledge for social development.

Salvador, Bahia, Brazil, 23 September 2005