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GHF2014 – PS19 – Improving Access to Essential Medicines

Improving Access to Essential Medicines
Dr. Gilles Forte
Department for Essential Medicines and Health Products, World Health Organization, Switzerland
Strengthening Health Systems to Achieve Access to Essential Medicines
Ms. Alessandra Ferrario
Research Officer, Department of Social Policy, London School of Economics and Political Science, United Kingdom
Dr. Nicholas Banatvala
Noncommunicable Diseases and Mental Health Dept., World Health Organization, Switzerland
Dr. Nils Billo
International Union Against TB and Lung Disease, Switzerland
Ms. Maria Kathia Cárdenas
CRONICAS Centre, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, Lima, Peru
Dr. Julie Sarah Torode
Deputy CEO and Advocacy & Programmes Director, Union for International Cancer Control (UICC), Switzerland
Mr. Mario Ottiglio
Director, Public Affaires and Global Health Policy, International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers & Associations IFPMA, Switzerland
Ms. Margaret Ewen
Coordinator, Global Health Projects (Pricing), Health Action International (HAI), The Netherlands
This session at the Geneva Health Forum 2014 will aim to discuss the experience from different countries looking at barriers and facilitators to achieving the 80% target in different contexts and use this experience to see if lessons can be learnt on a global level and inform the implementation of concrete actions by different actors to reach this target. Following the presentation of country experiences different global actors will respond to the challenges presented as detail how they could see the problems being solved at what roles different stakeholders can play.

PS19_Gilles_ForteDr. Gilles Forte

Dr. Gilles Forte is the Coordinator of the “Essential Medicines and Health Products Policy, Access and Use team” at WHO headquarters. He is also Secretariat of expert committees on selection and use of medicines and on drug dependence.

Dr. Forte leads the development of guidance and tools for improving and monitoring WHO Member States policy, governance, access and use of medicines and health products, including for NCDs. Prior to this, he coordinated WHO medicines policy work in the WHO African Region.

Dr. Forte oversaw WHO collaboration with Countries of Central and Eastern Europe while based in the EURO Office in Copenhagen. He was also Medicines Policy and Supply officer for the WHO emergency operations in the former Yugoslavia. He is one of the authors of the WHO Guidelines for Drug Donations and has developed a series of emergency medical kits including for NCDs. Dr Forte has extensive experience of the NGO sector, having worked with a number of aid agencies involved in development and humanitarian programmes in Africa and Eastern Europe.

Trained in hospital pharmacy and public health, Dr. Forte holds a doctorate in pharmacy and a Master’s degree in pharmacology and nutrition. He has also held senior posts in the French public health system and at the national centre for scientific research.

Alessandra_Ferrario3Ms. Alessandra Ferrario

Alessandra Ferrario is a Research Officer in health policy at London School of Economics. Her research focuses on access to medicines and non-communicable diseases. One of her current research projects looks at improving budget impact and cost-effectiveness of pharmaceutical products through the introduction of managed entry agreements (MEAs). Over the past two years she has been working with the World Health Organization on issues around availability, affordability and quality of medicines in the Republic of Moldova.

Alessandra is also studying the burden and management of diabetes, both from a health and economic perspective, as part of a multi-country study in low- and middle-income countries. In previous projects she has investigated the determinants of price and utilisation differences for prescription medicines across OECD countries and issues related to good governance for medicines in low and middle income countries. She holds an MSc in Health Policy, Planning and Financing (LSE/LSHTM), MSc in Epidemiology (Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, University of Basel) and BSc in Molecular Biology (University of Basel).

Nick Banatvala_squareDr. Nicholas Banatvala

Dr Nick Banatvala is currently Senior Adviser to the Assistant Director General (Noncommunicable Diseases and Mental Health) at WHO in Geneva. Current responsibilities include leading development of a global coordination mechanism for the prevention and control of  NCDs, spearheading a newly set up UN NCD Taskforce and leading WHO’s global training programme to build capacity on NCDs for senior policy makers in middle and low-income countries.

Prior to this, Nick was Head of Global Affairs at the Department of Health in England where he led the development and implementation of the UK Government's first-ever global health strategy, its strategy for working with WHO and DH’s bilateral engagement with emerging economies. Before that, he headed up DFID’s work on global health initiatives and scaling up health services. This included leading on the health inputs for the 2005 G8 Gleneagles communiqué. He has represented the UK on a number of international initiatives, including the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria and GAVI. Prior to this, Nick worked for DFID on health programmes in Pakistan, Afghanistan and the Middle East. Nick has experience of the NGO sector, having worked with the UK aid agency Merlin on development and humanitarian programmes.

Nick trained in paediatrics and infectious diseases and then did public health and epidemiologic research in the UK and at CDC, Atlanta. Nick has also held senior posts in UK public health. Nick has sat on government, non-government and academic boards, as well as national and international committees. He has undertaken consultancies for a number of agencies including the World Bank.

PS19_Nils_BilloDr. Nils Billo

Dr. Nils E. Billo, MD, MPH was Executive Director of the International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease (The Union) from 1992 to June 2013.

Under the leadership of Dr. Billo, The Union has grown into a leading international health organisation, with more than 10,000 members and subscribers in 152 countries, and some 300 staff and consultants working from Paris and regional and country offices in 13 countries. The Union's mandate has expanded to include not only tuberculosis and lung disease, but also some of today's most vital interrelated public health issues, such as child lung health, HIV/AIDS, the pandemic of diseases caused by tobacco use and non-communicable diseases (NCDs).

Dr. Billo completed his medical training at the University of Basel, Switzerland and holds a Master's of Public Health from the University of California, Berkeley. He was a member of the Stop TB Coordinating Board and past president of the Forum of International Respiratory Societies (FIRS), which organised the 2010 Year of the Lung campaign. Before joining The Union, he was head of the Epidemiology Section of the Federal Office of Public Health in Switzerland.

Dr. Billo is currently working as Senior Consultant for The Union.

PS06_Maria Kathia CardenasMs. Maria Kathia Cárdenas

Maria Kathia Cárdenas, BA, MSc(c), is a Peruvian investigator at CRONICAS Center of Excellence in Chronic Diseases at Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia (UPCH). Maria Kathia graduated from Economics and studied a Master in Epidemiological Research at UPCH through a Fellowship supported by The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) . Prior to her move to CRONICAS, she worked in areas devoted to Economic Evaluation of Projects and Public Policy in Social Development at two larger economic and development Think Tanks in Peru: Centro de Investigación de la Universidad del Pacífico and Instituto de Estudios Peruanos. Her area of interest is Health economics applied to chronic diseases.

She is the co-investigator in a research that received a seed grant award from NHLBI on lifestyles and cost of hypertension and she managed a health-system study looking into overcoming barriers to access care and treatment for chronic non-communicable diseases in Peru funded by the Alliance for Health Policy and Systems Research, World Health Organization. Currently, she is in charge of the economic evaluation of a large study launching a salt substitute to reduce blood pressure at the population level supported by the NHLBI under The Global Alliance for Chronic Diseases.

PS19_Julie_TorodeDr. Julie Torode

Based in Geneva, Julie Torode is Deputy CEO and Advocacy & Programmes.

Director of the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC).

In addition to managing some of the UICC flagship publications such as the TNM classification series and the International Journal of Cancer, Dr Torode has been instrumental in developing and instigating the UICC road map spanning global advocacy and 5 lead programmes. Influencing policy at the highest level includes leading UICCs campaign ahead of the High Level Meeting on NCDs in 2011, as well as UICCs work as founding federation of the NCD Alliance and the women’s task force on NCDs and health with partner organizations from the NCD, HIV-AIDs and reproductive health space. Recent work includes establishing programme leads on the Global Access to Pain Relief Initiative and Cervical Cancer Initiative as well as a review of the UICC fellowships and training offer. Dr Torode leads UICCs strategic relationships with key partners IARC (Global Initiative on Cancer registry Development), IAEA (PACT partnership) and WHO (joint work plan as NGO in official relations) as well as UICC members active in international cancer control.

Prior to joining UICC, she spent the last 10 years in Germany working in the pharmaceutical industry including phase I-IV clinical research - with a particular focus on breast and ovarian cancers, professional relations management and working with patient groups in oncology. She has a special interest in cancer prevention and palliative care. Dr Torode holds a PhD in Organic chemistry from the University of Liverpool.

PS19_Mario_Ottiglio_squareMr. Mario Ottiglio

Mario Ottiglio is Director at the IFPMA where he has been working since 2007 in positions of increasing responsibility. Mario leads on global health policy, coordinates IFPMA Members’ policy positions and conveys them to government and UN Specialized Agencies officials.

Mario also heads IFPMA’s public affairs and communications efforts, developing partnerships and promoting active dialogue with key stakeholders from governments, multilateral organizations, and civil society.

Prior to joining the IFPMA, Mario worked as a consultant for both the private sector and governments. Mario holds an MA in Political Science from the Naples Eastern University and is an Italian national.

PS19_Margaret_Ewen_squareMs. Margaret Ewen

Margaret is a pharmacist working on medicine price, availability and affordability issues at Health Action International (HAI) in Amsterdam.

In partnership with the World Health Organization, a methodology manual for measuring medicine prices, availability, affordability and price components was first published in 2003 (with a second edition published in 2008). To date, Marg has led or assisted more than 100 medicine price and availability surveys in all regions of the world, and provided pricing policy advice to numerous national governments.

She is currently looking at prices and affordability of NCD medicines in some Middle Eastern countries, and developing a methodology to compare prices of locally produced and imported medicines. Prior to joining HAI, Marg was a senior advisor at the Medicines Regulatory Authority (Medsafe) in her home country of New Zealand.

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