The 69th Indian Pharmaceutical Congress & Exhibition (IPCE), which is a National convention of pharmacists, pharma academia, industry & senior Central & State Government Regulatory officers, will be taking place at the Chitkara University Campus on the Zirakpur-Patiala Highway near Chandigarh, from December 22-24. Details of the event of Pharmaceutical Industry were shared with media at a press conference here, by senior members of the Local Organising Committee(LOC).
“The Congress will be inaugurated by Hon’ble Governor of Punjab Mr. V P Singh Badnore on December 22. Mr. Brahm Mohindra, Health Minister, Punjab, will also be there. We will be having technical sessions by Industry bigwigs during the three day Congress. In fact, Prof. B Suresh, President, Pharmacy Council of India(PCI) & Dr G N Singh, Drug Controller General of India will be attending the inaugural session from 11 am onwards on Dec 22. The theme of the Congress is ‘Skill & will to make quality pill’, & the discussions will be centred around three main tracks – Pharma education, Pharmacy practice and Industry cum Regulations.” Said Dr Shailendra Saraf, Chairman, Local Organising Committee, IPCE 2017.
The experts from pharma manufacturing industry, top pharmacists & academicians will discuss threadbare the importance of good quality & safe medicines. Focus of the current congress would be on exploring new avenues in capacity building, critical monitoring and evaluation of pharmaceutical products to produce quality & safe medications.
A key point of discussion will be India’s dependence on import of Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients(API) -the crucial raw material for manufacturing drugs. This is mainly because though India has emerged as a key supplier of generic & affordable medicine for the world market, but it’s overwhelming dependence on China for API to the extent of over 65 per cent of the requirement, has emerged as a main worrying area. The discussions on API will take place in backdrop of recommendations of a Committee headed by V.M. Katoch, Former Secretary of Department of Health Research, who has suggested setting up of mega parks for API or Bulk drugs manufacturing.
It was brought to light that India has traditionally been focusing on process patents, but from 2005 onwards, importance of having product patents has come into limelight. “There has been a paradigm shift in this area as India is number 2 only to USA in applications for product patents with the USFDA. The Congress will have discussions by key speakers on the strides being made in this direction of discovering new drug molecules.” Added Dr Saraf.
“I am very glad to state that out of 2450 abstracts received, 1950 abstracts have been selected through peer review by expert committee for the presentation in various sessions. I would also like to proudly mention that around 10000 delegates are expected to participate in the Congress. There will be 68 speakers and 30 out of these will be from abroad.” said Dr Dhirender Kaushik, Organising Secretary,LOC, PCI 2017.
“Forums like IPC provide a unique opportunity to pharma educationalists to interact with industry and regulatory professionals and allow them to acquaint themselves with recent technologies through technical sessions & Pharma expo. It would help academicians to look into their curriculum and incorporate content beyond syllabus as per the current need of the industries.” Said Ms Madhu Chitkara, Vc Chancellor, Chitkara University, who’s department of Pharmacy is hosting the delegates of the Congress.
This year’s Congress is being coordinated by Association of Pharmaceuticals teachers of India(APTI) & Dr Swarnlata Saraf, Vice President, Association of Pharmaceuticals Teachers of India(Central Zone) also partcipated in the press meet.
It is noteworthy that a professional exhibition to showcase new innovations of pharmaceutical machinery, laboratory equipment etc. from India and overseas will run concurrently alongside the technical sessions.
Another burning issue that will come up at IPC 2017 is the dual regulation of pharmacy education by Pharmacy Council of India (PCI) and All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) which is a controversial issue. The issue of making a separate Ministry of Pharmaceuticals will also come up as the current dispensation of having Pharma under Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers is not giving desired results.
“We will be adopting a resolution on the final day which will be submitted to the Central Government for appropriate action. “Summed up Dr Saraf.