Pfizer, Indian NGO tie up on public health


New Delhi : US pharmaceutical company Pfizer and an Indian NGO Monday tied up to work together in the areas of public health, medical research and education with the goal of providing a better health system in India.

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Pfizer Inc, which is one the largest research based pharmaceutical company in the world, and Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI) will work together on several initiatives to strengthen public health through education, training, research, community empowerment and improve access to health services.

PHFI works on strengthening training, research and policy development in the area of public health in the country.

PHFI president K. Srinath Reddy said the pharmaceutical company will provide partial support to them for establishing centres for strengthening health systems in the underdeveloped districts of Adilabad in Andhra Pradesh and Ganjam in Orissa.

“We are focused on strengthening the public health workforce capacity in India by estbalishing new institutes of public health, undertaking research, strengthening existing institutions, facilitating establishment of standards in public health education and wider access to health services,” he told reporters.

One of the subject closest to their hearts is dealing with the tobacco problem.

“Out of the 13.1 percent people who use tobacco are in the age group of 13-15 years. They want to quit but don’t know how,” he added.

“One of the goals in such a scenario would be to find ways to make people attend rehabilitation centres. Also, another way would be to make organizations at the rural level where women of the village could monitor the number of tobacco consumers. Then they could help with the provision of additional technology to help these people,” he added.

Jack Watters, Pfizer’s vice-president external medical affairs, said: “Our goal is to improve health in the public sector. We are looking for an establishment of a better health system through research in India.”