From left, Dr Andrew McLachlan, Chairman of the Conference, Mr John Ware, President, WPPF and Executive member Mrs Myung Suk Park, Dr Klara Tisocki (newly appointed Regional Adviser in Pharmaceuticals, World Health Organization, Manila) and Executive member Mr Nobuo Yamamoto.
The Asia/Pacific National Medicines Policies Conference was held in Sydney, Australia 26-29 May 2012. The meeting was held under the auspices of WHO, Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing, supported by NPS Better Choices – Better Health, Australia’s independent quality use of medicines implementation body and the University of Newcastle, Australia.
Some 400 participants from right across the Asia/Pacific region attended and were given a wonderful opportunity for practising health professionals representing their non-government associations to meet and discuss problems and experiences with representatives of government. It represented a wonderful opportunity to –
Ø Share knowledge, skills and experiences delegates have gained as they have moved to implement elements of their national medicines policy (NMP).
Ø Determine the current priority elements of NMPs for implementation in participating countries
Ø Understand the major enablers and barriers to NMP implementation
Ø Consider an evaluation framework to monitor implementation of NMPs for the region
Ø Strengthen networks and collaboration across the region.
The participants were welcomed by Dr Hank Bekedam, WHO, representing the Regional Directors of both South East Asia and Western Pacific regions of WHO.
Dr Budiono Santoso of WHO, Western Pacific, gave an overview of the state of implementation of National Medicines Policies both globally and in the Asia/Pacific region.
Professor Lloyd Sansom from Australia, introduced the discussion by describing the Australian experience in establishing and supporting a National Medicines Policy.
Speakers from China, Japan, South Korea, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Laos, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Vietnam and the Philippines, presented their national experiences in developing and supporting National Medicines Policies.
The meeting included workshops where all participants both organisational and government had the opportunity for input. These included medicine supply and distribution, generic medicine policies, antimicrobial resistance, monitoring medicines, monitoring medicine safety, advertising and promotion of medicines and the rational and quality use of medicines.
The meeting was a wonderful experience, both socially and workwise, enabling the rare opportunity for NGO health professionals to directly interact on an international basis with their government peers.
The Western Pacific Pharmaceutical Forum would like to express its appreciation to NPS and Dr Andrew McLachlan, Chairman of the Conference Committee, for facilitating such a worthwhile meeting.
Some of the speakers’ presentations are already available on the internet and may be accessed at www.apcnmp2012.com.au/scientific-program
Further presentations made at the meeting will be advised when available and the full official report will be published on our website when completed.