Ayush & WHO sign LoE for Cooperation in Traditional medicine

Feb 15: The Ministry of AYUSH, Government of India and the World Health Organization South East Regional Office (WHO SEARO) signed a Letter of Exchange (LoE) for the secondment/deputation of an AYUSH expert to WHO’s regional traditional medicine programme in New Delhi, India amidst a signing ceremony organized at WHO-SEARO, New Delhi today.

Vaidya Rajesh Kotecha, Secretary, Ministry of AYUSH, Government of India and Dr Poonam Khetrapal Singh, Regional Director of WHO South-East Asia Region signed the Agreement.

The initiative has been taken to support the WHO SEAR implementing the regional traditional medicine action plan, with particular emphasis on the safe and effective use of traditional medicine service including Ayurveda and other Indian traditional systems of medicine and its appropriate integration into national health care systems. Efforts will also be made to strengthen capacities of SEAR countries in the area of traditional medicine.

This partnership will also be joint efforts of Ministry of AYUSH and WHO in helping countries in the South-East Asia Region to develop policies and to implement action plans to strengthen the role of traditional medicine.

At the ceremony to mark the start of this partnership, WHO South East Asia Regional Director, Dr Poonam Khetrapal Singh said, ‘The close collaboration of WHO and the Government of India goes back many decades, to the Basic Agreement both parties concluded on 16 July 1952, to fulfill mutual responsibilities in a spirit of friendly cooperation. Today’s agreement will formally extend this cooperation into the area of traditional medicine, which is a valuable tool in our shared quest to achieve universal health coverage.’

On this occasion, Vaidya Rajesh Kotecha, Secretary, Ministry of AYUSH, Govt. of India said that M/o AYUSH has already had various interaction with the WHO in the field of Ayurveda, Yoga and other Indian Traditional system of Medicine (AYUSH) and these Indian systems are getting more popular & being accepted as Medicinal system in the South- East Asian countries, African countries, European countries, Latin America etc..

As a major outcome of this partnership, Ministry of AYUSH and WHO would be working to identify various challenges faced by the member states of SEAR (region) in regulating, integrating and further promoting of Traditional systems of Medicine in the respective countries. Further, Ministry of AYUSH and WHO will assist Member States to develop appropriate policy/regulation framework, exchange of information/activities performed for integration of TM in public health and dissemination of information about TM to the community, said  Secretary, AYUSH.

On this occasion, the Ministry of AYUSH, Govt. of India and the WHO SEAR office also agreed to launch a public health research project on COVID. The project is jointly supported by WHO SEARO and Ministry of AYUSH.