NEW DELHI: The Ministry of AYUSH and the World Health Organization's Southeast Asian Regional Office (WHO-SEARO) signed a Letter of Exchange on Monday for the deputation of an AYUSH expert to WHO's regional traditional medicine programme in New Delhi.
Vaidya Rajesh Kotecha, Secretary, Ministry of AYUSH, 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-SEARO implementing the regional traditional medicine action plan, with particular emphasis on the safe and effective use of traditional medicine services 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 the capacities of SEAR countries in the area of traditional medicine, said ministry officials in a statement.
This partnership will be part of joint efforts of the 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 southeast Asia Regional Director, DrPoonamKhetrapal Singh said, "The close collaboration of WHO and the Government of India goes back many decades, to the Basic Agreement both parties concluded on July 16, 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."
Secretary Kotecha said that AYUSH has already had various interactions with WHO in the field of Ayurveda, Yoga, and other Indian traditional systems of medicine, and these Indian systems are getting more popular and being accepted as medicinal systems in South-East Asian countries, Africa, Europe, Latin America, and others. (IANS)