ICMR conducts two-day workshop on Innovative TB Health Technologies

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The Indian Council of Medical Research held a two-day Innovative TB Health Technologies Workshop to encourage the innovative health technologies for TB to be assessed and enable their adoption in the End TB program.

The workshop will also provide a sharing platform for TB innovation health technologies which were displayed in the Stop TB Summit held in Varanasi.

Addressing the workshop, Minister of State for Health Prof. S P Singh Baghel said, “there is substantial decline in TB cases and notifications in India in the last few years.” Underscoring that innovation is key to the success of the mission, he urged the innovators to produce quality products that can be deployed at scale.

Mr Singh said that the aggressive implementation of Central Government programs like Swachh Bharat Mission has led to considerable improvement in water, sanitation and hygiene indicators which is also helping in reducing diseases like TB”.

Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan requested the innovators to not just bring innovative pilot products but innovation that can be rolled out in a programmatic manner. He hoped that the deliberations over the two days would lead to innovative products deployable at scale for India.

Dr Rajiv Bahl, Secretary, Dept. of Health Research (DHR) and DG, ICMR noted that technological solutions are inevitable for any health solutions. He stated that India has a lot of innovators but most of the innovations do not reach the scale because of various reasons like regulatory challenges or delayed approvals etc.

Dr Soumya Swaminathan, former Chief Scientist, WHO stated that TB is an age-old problem but of late there has been a huge emphasis on eliminating it since it is a huge burden, especially for the poor. She highlighted that “India’s success in eliminating it will help a long way in its global elimination as was seen with other diseases before like Polio”.