Youth Information - Population issue -II
ICYO Youth Information Newsletter
ICYO Youth Information Newsletter
Indian Committee of Youth Organizations
March 2006- Second Special issue on Population
Platform of 356 Youth Organizations in India
Indias largest network of urban and rural youth
In last few months, many activities related to Population, Reproductive Health and Development were held and ICYO involved in some of the activities. ICYO-Youth Information is now releasing information/reports of these events to update our readers. This is the second issue in series.
. Editorial Team, Youth Information, Indian Committee of Youth Organizations.
Role of Generic Drug products in meeting reproductive health commodity
Consultative Meeting by PPD & MOHFW
The consultative meeting on The Role of Generic Products in Meeting Reproductive Health Commodity Needs in Lower and Middle Income Countries was held in New Delhi on November 19, 2005. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss contraceptive commodity gap and how it is being addressed, to assess the impact of Trade Related Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) on generic pharmaceuticals and to consider what actions are required to address the constraints and obstacles to international supply. In addition to the participants from the two sponsoring organizations, the meeting comprised representatives of several generic drug manufacturers as well several experts and resource persons. The meeting organized by Partners in Population and Development (PPD) and Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of Republic of India
The meeting began with a welcome address and opening statement by Mr. A P Singh, Director, International Cooperation, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India. Mentioning that the participants for the meeting were from several countries like India, Thailand, China, United States etc, he expressed his wish that the discussions following the meeting would be on wide ranging and global issues and that the participants would be able to share and formulate strategies to address the present issues of concern.
Mr. Timothee Gandaho, Executive Director, Partners in Population and Development, in detail about the objectives of the meeting. He informed that the main objectives are to ascertain what role can generic drug manufacturers play in assuring the availability of contraceptives; discuss how the gap between the demand and the supply can be bridged and how these two can be mixed to arrive at an affordable price; discuss how South - South initiative can play a role in assuring the constant supply of good quality contraceptives to the countries where it is most needed at an affordable price; promote South-South learning and exchange of information.
Mr. Jyoti Singh, Permanent Observer to the United Nations, Partners in Population and Development mentioned that need was recognized for the generic drug manufacturers to meet in a consultative manner to see what kind of cooperation and coordination would be needed among them in future. Apart from the above objectives, it was important to discuss issues of improving quality, promoting new research, identifying emerging needs etc. It was recognized that the generic drug manufacturers could play a very important role in meeting all these challenges. He mentioned that. He expressed his hope that if the manufacturers found this meeting useful, they could express their needs and PPD and UNFPA together can help them in meeting the required needs of reproductive health commodities.
The first session was devoted to discuss the Contraceptive Commodity Gap and how is it being addressed. Mr David Smith, Chief, Procurement Services of UNFPA was the key speaker in the session. He explained the out of UNFPAs total procurement pattern; country level procurement was as high as 25 %. The largest procurement area is that of contraceptives which accounts for procurement as high as 44% as compared to the rest of the areas which are services, medical equipment, pharmaceuticals etc.
He gave the detail information about the UNFPA procurement of contraceptives.
Talking about prequalification, Mr Smith mentioned that UNFPA has been delegated the lead in condoms and IUDs and it aims to inspect all condoms and IUD suppliers that express an interest to supply.
Mr Jyoti Singh, Partners in Population and Development summarised the discussion by mentioning that various issues raised needed further discussion. It was accepted that though international efforts are expanding, the demands for contraceptives will go on increasing further. There is a high degree of volatility in the funding available for this. While it is accepted that the public sector will indeed remain in the market, the role of private manufacturers will not be of less importance in meeting the growing demands of contraceptives. They need to come together to meet these challenges. He expressed his hope that with time the role of UNFPA and WHO too in this sector would become more refined.
The session two discussed on Hormonal contraception- what products are being manufactured in Asia and what are the constraints and obstacles to international supply. Mr Peter Hall presented his study the topic.
Mr Peter Hall started by mentioning that in most developing countries, the public sector remains the principal supplier of contraception and it is intended to supply to the poorest clients. Social marketing programmes are also supplying condoms and hormonal contraceptives. The ccontraceptive commodity crisis is increasing because there are more people of reproductive age and there is Increased demand for contraceptives, there is insufficient donor funding, and inadequate management capacity. In 2004 Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition was loosely structured to foster collaborative activities and information sharing. It comprises representatives of organizations and constituencies that have significant financial and/or programmatic sake in RH supply security and provides a forum for sharing information, data, and research findings to advance its priorities; and address RH supply security at country level.
Mr. R Narayanaswamy, Deputy Drugs Controller (India), Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India gave the information on Drug Regulation in India.
Sophie Logez WHO/ HQ, Geneva discussed about Health Organizations Prequalification Project. He informed that there are many problems with the quality of medicines used in HIV/AIDS, TB and Malaria treatment. The experience in past years of prequalification project suggests that 70% of manufacturing sites did not pass in first inspection and 80% dossiers evaluated did not meet requirements. Such failures can lead to treatment failure, development of resistance, avoidable deaths, wasted resources etc.
The current WHO activities linked to production are: Development, dissemination and promotion of international norms and standards in the area of quality, safety and efficacy of medicines, Input into regional and interregional harmonization efforts, Training and technical support for regulatory agencies, Training in good manufacturing practices, Support to national medicines control laboratories, provision of information on prices for active ingredients etc.
The objectives of prequalification are: Propose list of prequalified products linked to manufacturing site for quality, efficacy and safety, Give assurance that international norms and standards are applied at all the steps of the prequalification and at the process itself, Enable and speed up access to good quality of medicines.
The impact of Trade Related Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) on generic pharmaceuticals in India was the next issue which was discussed in the meeting. Mr Dilip Shah of Indian Pharmaceutical Alliance was the main speaker.
He said that in the absence of any price regulation or compulsory licensing the total annual welfare losses to the Indian economy from the withdrawal of all four domestic product groups in the quinolone sub-segment would be on the order of Rs. 32 billion in 2000. At the then prevailing exchange rate this translates into a figure of US $ 713 million. Of this amount, foregone profits of domestic producers constitute roughly Rs. 2.3 billion or US $50 million. The overwhelming portion of the total welfare loss therefore derives from the loss of consumer welfare.
Mr. Peter Hall emphasized in concluding session, that ultimately there is a need to provide products for poor people and the funds to ensure the sustainability of products are lacking. It will be useful if a projected budget line on reproductive health commodities can be provided to the donors so that they can anticipate the budget. More advocacy and resource generation for contraceptives commodities needs to be done. The projection skills of organizations are not very strong at the moment, and these need to be developed. People should have a choice in the commodities available and that is the ultimate goal of the entire exercise. And finally there is a broader issue of public education to remove the myths about contraceptives usage.
ICYO attended the meeting.
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