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Anbumani calls World to observe Oct 2 as 'No Alcohol Day'

New Delhi, Wed, 30 Jul 2008 NI Wire

An apostle of fighting against tobacco and liquor, the Union Health Minister for Health and Family Welfare, Dr. Anbumani Ramadoss sought the support for observing 2nd October every year as ‘World No Alcohol Day.’

He was speaking in his opening remarks at the India-Brazil-South Africa (IBSA) Trilateral Meeting held here on Tuesday.

The Health Ministers of the three countries-India, Brazil, and South Africa (IBSA)-kicking off another round of cooperation agreed to cooperate each other on wide range of health related issues.

In order to provide pace to the liquor control, Dr. Ramadoss also advocated for an institution of a ‘framework convention on Alcohol Control’ on the similar lines of ‘framework convention on Tobacco Control.’

Liquor is the prime factor for several diseases, domestic violence against women and children, disability, social problems and premature deaths. It must be brought to severe administrative control. A strict measure will be taken while issuing licence for opening of liquor shops.

Apart from tobacco and alcohol, physical inactivity and unhealthy diets (junk food) are the common risk factors giving fuel to some of the diseases such as cancer, diabetes and chronic respiratory diseases etc. Since the treatments of such diseases are expensive, controlling of the four major factors will be a preferred strategy in our countries.

On the grave issue of counterfeit medical products, Dr. Ramadoss urged for a united IBSA Forum to achieve clarity on any new definition of counterfeit drugs.

Explaining the need to take such an issue at a forum, he said: “our understanding is that such drugs which are recognised as generics in some countries can not be considered to be counterfeit, even in those countries where they may not have market authorization. And certainly, the transshipment of such drugs can not be controlled.”

Dr. Ramadoss said that in addition to the selected areas of traditional medicine, registration of drugs and medicine strengthening public health laboratories, research and development cooperation can be initiated between ICMR (India), MRC (South Africa) and FIOCRUZ (Brazil) under the aegis of global strategy and plan of action on public health innovations and intellectual property.

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