PHM-Exch> [PHM NEWS] PHM Sri Lanka meeting

Claudio Schuftan cschuftan at
Mon Feb 19 10:04:32 PST 2018

PHM Monthly Meeting – 02nd  February 2018

This meeting was held at Nagarodaya Centre and attended by 31 activists and
interested individuals .

The main focus of the meeting  was on the  Health component of the Open
Government Partnership in Sri Lanka. After initiating the programme about 6
months ago by Sarvodaya Sri Lanka and completing basic preparatory
activities, this was the first time that the approach was discussed in a
gathering of CSOs, trade unions  and other interested parties.

Dr. Vinya Ariyaratne explained the objectives of the OGP programme   which
was a new concept to the participants. Thereafter the National Coordinator
of Deshodaya gave a detailed explanation about the dimensions of the
programme with supporting documents to raise awareness of the participants.
  According to him there are three commitments under health.  They are:

·       Enhancing the public involvement in the preventive and curative
measures for Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD).

·       Transparent policy on the supply of drugs at affordable prices.

·       Improving national health performance.

Following this, three speakers presented on the above commitments covering  the
medical aspects of CKD, the issue of safe drugs at affordable prices and a
panel discussion covered the  proposed activities under the Commitment of

The decisions taken were:

·       Organizing action to pay closer attention to the public health
aspects of CKD, because it has been found that in certain areas, one
section of the locality shows no prevalence of CKD while another adjacent
location shows high prevalence. It was suggested that the causes must be
analysed. Even the traditional varieties of rice that are accepted as
having curative properties that could control CKD has become a business
with high prices. Steps such as rain water harvesting need to be revived.

·       Native physicians in the gathering mentioned about successes of
native treatment and they agreed to provide some case studies.

·       As  regards drug prices, patch solution may not be productive
unless the government, physicians an pharmacies insist on prescribing by
generic names. The discussion revealed that the problem is complex.

·       Attention was paid to nutrition issues as well. One activist
specializing on jak fruit related food items agreed to train others.

All these presentations were followed by open discussions in which all
participants responded with enthusiasm.

Prepared by Somaratne Herath
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