Vizag summit calls for new global health architecture

VISHAKHAPATNAM: The three-day 16th Global Health Summit organised by American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) in Visakhapatnam called for a new global health architecture that gives priority to promoting health and preventing disease, rather than only treating the sick.

The architecture must be based on common vision, be inclusive, and stimulate innovative solutions to health challenges.

The summit also discussed many important issues related to Andhra Pradesh. Taking forward the call of Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy, AAPI decided to provide mental healthcare for school students to prevent suicides. For the purpose, a pilot project is being launched to train 10,000 teachers as counsellors.

AAPI will also support the state government in tackling cervical cancer among women. Health minister Vidadala Rajani has gone on to announce free human papillomavirus vaccine for girls in the age group of 9–14 years.

Participating in a panel discussion on newer treatment modalities in radiation oncology, surgical oncology, systemic therapies for cancer, strategies to control cancer and economies of cancer drugs, Dr. D. Raghunadha Rao, founder director of Homi Bhabha Cancer Hospital and Research Centre, reiterated that therapeutic landscape of cancer has undergone a sea change with the advent of genomic profiling of tumours.

It is important for oncologists to periodically get retrained in interpretation of complex genomic reports to understand the current status of a tumour. This can help them choose the best drug for a given patient to target the cancer at molecular level. This leads to precision medicine and personalised cancer treatment, which is the most effective and least toxic, Dr. Raghunadha Rao pointed out.

Former chief scientist of World Health Organisation (WHO) Soumya Swaminathan, who also participated in the summit, suggested regular screening of people for non-communicable diseases like diabetes, hypertension, stroke, heart and kidney diseases.

More than 350 doctors, including 100 experts from the USA, were among the speakers. They shared their knowledge and expressed insightful views on treatment of children and cancer, new trends in medicine and modern treatment procedures.

Brainstorming sessions were held on mental health, non-communicable diseases, cardiology, diabetes, kidney diseases, gastroenterology, blindness prevention and current trends in infant mortality.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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