International Network Head Office Transparency Statement

Médecins du Monde (MdM) – Doctors of the World is an independent international movement of 15 organisations working across the world, both at home and abroad since 1980. Our mission is to provide access to care, ensuring that healthcare systems are built on solidarity, equality and equity, and open to everyone regardless of origin, gender, financial resources, sexual orientation… We focus our work towards empowerment of people and communities who face numerous vulnerability factors for them to overcome barriers in access to healthcare. We rely mainly on volunteers.

Each MdM has its own transparency policy, in line with the transparency statement of the international network and also adhering to any nationally recognised code of conduct on transparency and ethics in fundraising. For example, see published transparency statements by MdM France here, MdM Spain, MdM Belgium or MdM Germany. Other members’ transparency policies are usually stated in yearly activity or impact reports.

Financial independence

MdM carries out its mission in complete independence from political ideology, economic interest or religion. Our financial independence relies on a large diversification of donors. It is an essential prerequisite to avoid any form of pressure and to preserve freedom of action and impartiality. We rely mainly (65%) on small donations from individuals (general public). In addition, we receive grants from philanthropic foundations. An example are our European advocacy activities: half are funded by small donations from the general public, and half by EPIM (the European Programme for Integration and Migration), which is an initiative of the Network of European Foundations (NEF).

Our remaining funds are made up of grants from national cooperation or health agencies and corporate partnerships. An example of a corporate partnership is the one with L’Oréal, who partly funds MdM France’s international programs with no visibility requested.

Collaboration with companies

MdM acknowledges the role that companies can potentially play as agents of social change. Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is now a motor for collective change. Independence, transparency and accountability must, moreover, prevail in any collaboration.

In this context, the MdM International Network will refuse support from any company which in its country of origin or in developing countries in which it operates:

  • Perpetrates or endorses in any way violations of humanitarian principles[1] and human dignity[2];
  • Undermines the public health system in any manner whatsoever for its own ends and gain;
  • Significantly damages the environment, by polluting the water, destroying biodiversity, recklessly disposing of toxic waste, etc.;
  • Does not respect the international labour standards of the I.L.O. (International Labour Organization);
  • Supports totalitarian [3] or authoritarian [4]

 

No member of the MdM International Network collaborates with companies working in the sectors of weapons, tobacco, alcohol,), extractive industries…

For other companies, its strategies and operations are analysed in more detail on a case-by-case basis, as does the type of collaboration sought, in the following cases:

  • Pharmaceutical industry: its area of intervention complements that of MdM. The actions of some companies in the sector may however directly conflict with the right to health defended by MdM. An example of a partnership with the pharmaceutical industry is LEEM (Les entreprises du médicament) in France which offers most of the medicines needed by all our health centres (no services are provided in counterpart).
  • Sectors of the industry which promote unhealthy dietary habits;
  • Communication and media industry;

Financial transparency policy

The MdM International Network Head Office is not a legal entity in itself, but is hosted by MdM-France. MdM-France has been the founder of the International Network (in 1980) and is responsible for the “MdM” brand and ethics. The association is a co-founding member of the French « Comité de la Charte du Don en Confiance », a watchdog association bringing together 79 French associations and foundations that committed to uphold principles regarding transparent functioning, good governance without any conflicts of interest, high-quality communication and fundraising activities, and financial transparency.

MdM-France also submits its yearly accountancy reports to formally recognized external financial auditors. The 2015 financial report, including the outcome of the external audit, can be found here: http://www.medecinsdumonde.org/fr/actualites/publications/2016/08/02/rapport-moral-2015. Transparency in MdM-France is also guaranteed by an independent donor committee that regularly analyses and questions the functioning of the association. The committee consists of 12 members to whom are allocated the necessary means to evaluate both domestic and international MdM programmes. Its President speaks at all General Assemblies, just after the financial report. He takes part to the Board’s meetings.

Awarding of tenders and contracts

MdM procedures and guidelines for tender documents require adherence to the principles of transparency, proportionality, equal treatment and non-discrimination. MdM procedures and guidelines require that contracts are awarded to the tender offering best value for money (best price quality ratio). They are drafted in such a way as to avoid any conflict of interests.

All MdM bidding and contractual documents establish that proposals will be rejected and contracts will be terminated in case of corrupt, fraudulent, collusive and/or coercive practices and is clearly set out in tender documents and standard contracts. The terms and conditions which must be accepted by suppliers require the NGO to satisfy itself with regard to the non-exploitation of child labour and with regard to the respect of basic social rights and working conditions by potential/actual suppliers.

Fraud and Corruption Prevention Policies

Fraud and corruption prevention is integrated into all MdM’s policies and procedures which is the reason why MdM has decided not to have a “specific” fraud and corruption prevention policy. MdM works with Transparency International in order to combat fraud and corruption and ensure that all funds are spent on their intended purpose.

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Following the advice of an external fraud audit, MdM-France has introduced awareness raising activities for the identification and assessment of fraud and corruption risk and a Whistleblowing Policy whereby staff, everywhere in the world, can report suspicions of fraud or corruption to a person other than their line manager.

[1] See the Charter of Krakow and the Code of Conduct for International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement and NGOs in Disaster Relief.

[2] See the Sphere Project Humanitarian Charter and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

[3] Totalitarian regime: non-democratic power is in hands of a small elite that neglects human rights or does not tolerate opposition for state reasons.

[4] Authoritarian regime: regime with uncontrolled executing power.