ICMR Current Affairs - 2019
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The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and Ministry of Health inked Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the International Vaccine Institute (IVI) to collaborate on vaccine research and development.
The signing of the MoU is a continuation of India’s partnership with IVI to provide safe, effective and affordable vaccines for people around the world. With this partnership, India is committing an annual contribution of US $5,00,000 to IVI.
India is a vaccine industry powerhouse that supplies 60% of the world’s vaccines. India has with a long history of scientific collaboration with IVI. IVI has been partnering with Indian vaccine manufacturers, research institutes, government, and public health agencies on vaccine R&D. One of the most successful collaboration of IVI was with India’s Shantha Biotech on development of Shanchol, world’s first low-cost oral cholera vaccine. The vaccine was licensed in India in 2009 and WHO-prequalified in 2011.
International Vaccine Institute (IVI)
IVI is Seoul (South Korea) based international nonprofit organization devoted to developing and introducing new and improved vaccines to protect the people, especially children, against deadly infectious diseases. It was established in 1997 on the initiatives of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
Its work is exclusively on vaccine development and introduction specifically for people in developing countries, with a focus on neglected diseases affecting these regions. Currently, IVI has 40 countries and the World Health Organization (WHO) as signatories to its Establishment Agreement. India officially became a signatory to the IVI in 2012.
Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR)
The ICMR is India’s apex scientific body for the formulation, coordination and promotion of biomedical research. It was established in 1911 as Indian Research Fund Association (IRFA) making it one of the oldest and largest medical research bodies in the world. The ICMR functions under the Department of Health Research, Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare announced the finalization of India’s comprehensive and multi-sectoral National Action Plan at the ‘Inter-Ministerial Consultation on AMR containment’ held at New Delhi. The consultation was attended by various ministers including Minister of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution Ram Vilas Paswan, and Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change Anil Madhav Dave. The Ministers signed a ‘Delhi Declaration’ to contain Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR).
The Delhi Declaration calls for the support of all stakeholders including UN, WHO, FAO and other UN agencies, civil society organizations etc., in developing and implementing the national and state action plans on AMR. The National action plan has objectives of enhancing awareness, strengthening surveillance, improving rational use of antibiotics, reducing infections and promoting research
Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has set up a National Anti-Microbial Resistance Research and Surveillance Network (AMRRSN) to enable compilation of data of AMR at the national level.
Under AMRRSN, ICMR is carrying out surveillance of drug resistance to antibiotics in the following six pathogenic groups:
- Diarrhoeagenic bacterial organisms
- Enteric fever pathogens
- Enterobacteriaceae causing sepsis
- Gramnegative Non-fermenters
- Gram positives including MRSA
- Fungal infections.
In addition, the health ministry enacted regulations to regulate the sale of antibiotics and brought out National Guidelines for the use of antibiotics.
Further, the National Programme for Containment of AMR is under implementation in 12th Five Year Plan with the following objectives:
- To establish a laboratory-based surveillance system by strengthening laboratories.
- To generate quality data on AMR for pathogens of public health importance.
- To generate awareness among healthcare providers and in the community regarding the rational use of antibiotics.
- To strengthen infection control guidelines and practices and promote rational use of antibiotics.
Antibiotic drug resistance is developed in the micro-organisms. AMR is the ability of a microorganism such as bacteria, viruses etc., to render the anti-microbial such as antibiotics, antivirals and antimalarials ineffective against them. It results in failure of standard treatments and the spread of infections.