Union Health Minister inaugurates ‘2nd World Conference on Access to Medical Products: Achieving the SDGs 2030’

The three-day 2nd World Conference on ‘Access to Medical Products: Achieving the SDGs 2030’ was inaugurated by Mr J.P.Nadda, Union Minister of Health & Family Welfare on 9 October 2018 at New Delhi.

In his inaugural address, the Union Health Minister stated that access to medical products and creating an enabling legal and trade environment for public health are critical to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals 2030 Agenda. “These issues require continuous engagement and dialogue. I believe that the Health Ministry with active partnership of other ministries in Government of India will move forward in leaps and bounds,” he said.

On the occasion, Mr J. P. Nadda also released the Position Paper and launched the Information Sharing Platform Gateway for South-East Asia Regulatory Network (SEARN) developed by Centre for Development of Advanced Computing. It will promote regulatory and health collaboration among the countries of the South-East Asia Region.

The conference, organised by the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare (MoHFW), Government of India in collaboration with WHO Country Office for India, and in partnership with Indian Society of International Law, aims to achieve the SDGs 2030 agenda by taking forward the recommendations from the 1st World Conference 2017. It also builds on the work done for access to medical products in the context of SDGs, including trade agreements.

In his video message, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director General, WHO said “Reliable access to effective, safe, quality-assured and affordable medical products is key to making progress towards Universal Health Coverage and the SDGs.”

Among those present at the inauguration were Mr Ashwini Kumar Chaubey, Minister of State, MoHFW; Mrs Anupriya Patel, Minister of State, MoHFW; Health Ministers and Principal Secretaries from several states in India; Dr Mariângela Batista Galvão Simão, Assistant Director-General for Drug Access, Vaccines and Pharmaceuticals, WHO HQ; Dr Poonam Khetrapal Singh Regional Director, WHO South-East Asia Region; Mrs Preeti Sudan, Secretary (Health), Government of India; Dr Balram Bhargava, Secretary, Department of Health & Research (DHR) and DG, ICMR; Dr R.K Vats, Additional Secretary, MoHFW; Health; Dr Henk Bekedam, WHO Representative to India.

Congratulating the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare for hosting the 2nd World Conference on Access to Medical Products, Dr Poonam Khetrapal Singh said, “I am happy to see how all the 11-country state regulatory agencies have come together for the South-East Asia Regulatory Network, SEARN. Regulatory collaboration among countries will lead to quicker access to all medical products as agencies begin to develop reliance. Already I see drug regulators talking to each other and exchanging notes on product quality.”

The main sessions on Day 1 of the conference included access to medical products to achieve SDGs 2030; policies to support innovation for medical products; tracking investments in medical products research and development; mechanisms for knowledge sharing, including licensing options for medical products for health for all.

The conference has brought together the public health fraternity from across the globe representing multi-disciplinary sectors. This would ensure a wider outreach and collaboration with experts to fill in the knowledge gaps to address the complexities in an informed manner.

For more information, please visit: https://www.worldsdg2030.org