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Shripad Naik inaugurates international forum for advancing global collaboration in Homoeopathy
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Shripad Naik inaugurates international forum for advancing global collaboration in Homoeopathy

Panaji, Jan 24: Union Minister of AYUSH (Independent Charge) Shripad Naik inaugurated the World Integrated Medicine Forum on the regulation of Homoeopathic Medicinal Products with the theme ‘Advancing Global Collaboration’ in the city on Wednesday.

Speaking after inaugurating the event, Mr Naik India was the fifth largest investor in scientific research in Homoeopathy in the world and with the institutional support of more than 200 homoeopathic colleges and an autonomous Research Council having 26 research centres, Homoeopathic Pharmacopoeia Laboratory and a work force of about 250 thousand homoeopathic clinicians, India could contribute in various aspects of mainstream healthcare.

He called upon the industry as well as homoeopathic medical colleges to invest certain percentage of institutional and industrial revenues in research and collaborate with CCRH for undertaking high quality, cutting edge research projects.

The Union Minister said western medicine was facing a huge challenge of management of non-communicable diseases which could be tackled by means of safer medicines.

'Excessive use of anti-biotics, pain-killers, anti-depressants, anti-hypertensive, statins, etc are causing much harm to the society. Homoeopathy, with its safe dosage can prove to be an effective alternative in such situations. It has the potential to address non-communicable diseases by appropriately treating patients holistically in the initial stages and can also reduce the usage of these drugs,' he said.

He apprised the audience of the recent amendments in the Drugs & Cosmetics Rules 1945, which included freedom from requisition of separate license for a homoeopathy retailer for exhibiting the Homoeopathic Drugs for promotional activities in any fair, exhibitions etc and said it would promote awareness and usefulness of homoeopathic medicines at wider public platforms.

Another amendment, he informed the delegates about, was the provision of sale of homoeopathic medicine from an allopathic counter. 'A licensee of allopathic drugs’ sales can sell homoeopathic medicines without any need of a separate license. This will make homoeopathic medicines more widely and easily available in India,' he said.

The Minister complimented the actions taken by the Joint Working Group comprising of Homoeopathic Pharmacopoeia Convention of the United States (HPCUS), Pharmacopoeia Commission for Indian Medicine and Homoeopathy (PCIM&H) and CCRH based on the tripartite MoU signed by these bodies in the last forum, the most eminent one being successful harmonisation of 50 drugs in the American and Indian Homoeopathic Pharmacopeia.

He hoped that the successful outcomes of the agreement could be a benchmark for many more agreements to follow with the aim to develop and harmonise homoeopathic pharmacopoeias and to strengthen and enable regulatory provisions for homoeopathy worldwide.

In his address, Roshan Jaggi, Joint Secretary, Ministry of AYUSH, complimented the theme of the forum, Advancing Global Collaborations, which, he said, was multidimensional and needed tremendous joint efforts.

He said Ministry of AYUSH welcomed all efforts for collaborations with the governments and other institutes of the world at various levels.

He also informed about the main components of the International Collaboration scheme of Ministry of AYUSH, which included providing incentive to drug manufacturers, entrepreneurs, AYUSH institutions etc. for registration of AYUSH products (Market Authorisation) at regulatory bodies of different countries such as USFDA/EMEA/UK-MHRA/ NHPD/ TGA etc. for exports.

In a brief talk, Dr Hélène Renoux from France, President of the European Committee for Homeopathy, presented her views on the Homoeopathy Profession’s expectations from regulators and industry.

She informed that there was a strong demand from patients for homeopathy from all over Europe, with 74 per cent patients not only supporting the use of Homoeopathy, but also in favour of it continuing to be covered under social healthcare.

She said the European Union (EU) model of regulation of homeopathic medicinal products was actually a defence barrier, and its enforcement needed to be enhanced. She also looked at the efforts for harmonisation of pharmacopoeias as a positive move, which would help including remedies from each other’s pharmacopoeias.

Dr Robbert van Haselen, Director, World Integrated Medicine Forum (WIMF), in his keynote address, mentioned that AIMF aimed to further develop evidence-based Traditional, Complementary and Integrated systems of Medicine (TCIM) by promoting public-private co-operation, where the public and private sectors are the ‘actors’, while patients and health care providers are the ‘drivers’.

He said the legitimate and increasing demand/need for homeopathic products by patients and health care providers worldwide needs to be balanced by appropriate regulatory framework which proportionally addresses quality, safety, effectiveness and availability of medicines. To achieve this he said, the role of regulators, industry and respective countries are intertwined. He said that India is the rightful host to such a forum, given its openness to medical pluralism, both politically and culturally. (UNI)