Minister of Health, Nutrition and Indigenous Medicine Dr. Rajitha Senaratne attended the 9th World Health Summit (WHS) which commenced under the patronage of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, on 15th October.
The Summit was held from 15th-17th October, and featured over 40 sessions and brought together stakeholders and decision makers from different sectors, representing 100 countries.
Minister Rajitha Senaratne was invited to participate in a panel discussion on ‘Non-communicable diseases’, chaired by Andres Jack – Editor of the Financial Times. During the discussion, Minister Senaratne explained the various measures that Sri Lanka has taken so far to reduce the percentage of non communicable diseases by year 2020.
Princess Dina Mirad of Jordan, Katie Dain – the CEO of NCD Alliance United Kingdom, Gauden Galez – Director, WHO Regional Office for Europe, Joseph Kibachio – Head of the Division of Non Communicable Diseases (Kenya) were among other Panelists.
The political commitment and the strategies implemented by the Government of Sri Lanka in eradicating non communicable diseases were highly commended by the Speakers and the participants of the event. It was further mentioned that Sri Lanka should be considered a positive example by all member States, for its successful approach in overcoming persistent health challenges of the world.
The Summit also facilitated a special session to appreciate the initiatives taken by pioneers from all continents, who have developed new solutions for the critical challenges in public health and social medicine sectors. Dr. Kalana Maduwage – Senior lecturer at the Faculty of Medicine, University of Peradeniya, presented his invention on detecting snake venom in patients’ blood, at this session.
Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to Germany, Eng. Karunasena Hettiarachchi accompanied the Minister, to the summit while the delegation also included Dr. (Mrs) Sujatha Senaratne – Private Secretary to the Minister and Dr. S. Subasinghe – Consultant to the Minister. The Sri Lanka delegation was successful in meeting several key government officials and representatives from the industry, who commended the positive developments in Sri Lanka in overcoming its major health related challenges.