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AYUSH minister inaugurates 9th International Regulatory Cooperation Meeting for Herbal Medicines

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Over 33 delegates from 17 countries are participating in the three day-long Annual Meeting of IRCH

The Minister of State for AYUSH (Independent Charge), Shripad Yesso Naik inaugurated the 9th Annual Meeting of International Regulatory Cooperation for Herbal Medicines (IRCH) in New Delhi. The three-day meet has been organised by the Ministry of AYUSH in New Delhi from November 8-10, 2016. Over 33 delegates from 17 countries are participating in the three day-long Annual Meeting of IRCH.

Addressing the delegates, Naik said it is very essential to develop evidence-based remedies in the field of traditional medicine. It is for this reason that since long we are working on pharmacopoeias and formularies and have laid down quality standards of ayurvedic drugs including herbal extracts, the AYUSH minister added. He said that pharmacopoeia work has been given a lot of importance and Pharmacopoeia Commission of Indian Medicine has been a set up to develop quality standards of Indian medicine drugs matchable with global requirements of quality. Naik said that regulatory laws for education, practice and drugs are in place and are amended and reinforced from time to time in accordance with the emerging needs and requirements.

Ajit Mohan Sharan, Secretary, AYUSH,, welcomed the participating delegates. Sharan said that IRCH has been working in the direction of promoting and facilitating the safe use of herbal medicines globally and strengthening cooperation between national regulatory authorities by sharing experience, information and knowledge related to the regulation, quality, safety and efficacy of herbal medicines in its endeavour to protect and promote public health and safety through improved regulation for herbal medicine across the globe. He further said that Government of India offers active support and is committed to achieve the objectives of IRCH.

WHO Representative to India, Dr Henk Bekedam, said that the commitment and efforts of India in accelerating this sector is commendable. The wholistic approach of ayurveda can make a global impact like yoga, he added. Highlighting the issues of safety and quality of traditional medicine, Dr Bekedam said that they require proper regulation. Conferences like those of IRCH go a long way in knowledge sharing with WHO as well as between member countries, he said.

Drug Controller General of India Dr GN Singh, and Regional Director for South-East Asia, WHO, Dr Poonam Khetrapal also emphasised the need to set standards for traditional medicine and enforce Regulatory laws and develop a science based approach in order to maintain quality and safe use of traditional medicines.

EP News Bureau

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