Global HealthPharmaceutical Regulations in Japan

Strengthening Measures on Emerging Infectious Diseases

In March 2014, Guinea reported the recent outbreak of Ebola Virus Disease to World Health Organization (WHO). The disease spread mainly in West Africa, and infections by the disease were also confirmed in Europe and the United States. On August 2014, WHO declared a “Public Health Emergency of International Concern" in relation to this spread of Ebola Virus Disease in West Africa, and the situation came to be of international concern.
Moreover, the outbreak of MERS has been reported mainly in countries in the Arabian Peninsula since September 2012. In this manner, the risk of acquiring infectious diseases through animals has increased due to forest development, climate change. In addition, the progress of globalization has caused the increased possibility of occurrence of the situation, where a disease spreads to the whole international community beyond national borders. Various emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases are also likely to become of international concern in the future.

Using the spread of Ebola Virus Disease in West Africa as a lesson, the necessity of global health governance was recognized again. WHO, World Bank, United Nations, and other international organizations are holding discussions toward building an international health system for ordinary times and for emergencies, and strengthening the ability to address emergencies. It gives a big blow for the economy including the loss of the talented person and the reduction of the market if an infectious disease spread occurs. So, it becomes an inevitable issue for the company developing business on a global scale to take appropriate measures. In 2016, JPMA organized the taskforce to make the recommendation for the important issue of the global health discussed at G7 Ise-Shima Summit and G7 Health ministers'meeting. In particular, JPMA considers it necessary for the R&D-oriented pharmaceutical industry to play our roles in the research and development of drugs, vaccines and diagnostics in the infectious disease area such as pandemics, AMR or NTDs, and submitted “Requests for the Health Agendas at the G7 Ise-Shima Summit" about reinforcement of the structure which promoted research and development and international cooperation to the Japanese Government for the first time.

At the G7 Ise-Shima Summit, the G7 countries adopted the "G7 Ise-Shima Vision for Global Health," by which concrete commitments set out to achieve SDGs. The JPMA considers it to be a great achievement.

In March 2018, the National Center for Global Health and Medicine (NCGM) launched the NCGM International Infectious Disease Forum. JPMA and several membership companies are participating in the forum. There are urgent needs to create measures tackling AMR issues and domestic quarantine systems to address pandemic of emerging/reemerging infectious diseases such as Ebola Virus Disease, MERS, new strains of influenza etc. This forum is designated to promote development of products including diagnostic drugs, treatment drugs, preventive drugs, and testing equipment targeting emerging infectious diseases, reemerging infectious diseases, and AMR through industry-government-academia collaboration.

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