Addressing the problem of antibiotic resistance will require coordinated efforts to reduce unnecessary antibiotic use and develop new medicines. Ensuring that people in low-income countries have access to effective medicines is a priority.
During Sweden’s EU Presidency in 2009, a conference was held in Stockholm with the aim of initiating an innovative approach to medicine-related issues. The September 2010 conference, will build upon the previous one, but feature an expanded perspective and with participants from around the world.
H.R.H. Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden and Ms Karin Johansson, State Secretary to Minister for Health and Social Affairs Göran Hägglund, will open the conference. Journalists are welcome to attend the opening session (see the attached programme for additional information). Questions will be answered at press meetings arranged in association with the event (see below).
“This conference is of major importance, as it represents the first time that so many different global players will gather in this way”, says Otto Cars, professor of infectious diseases at Uppsala University and Chairman of the International Secretariat for ReAct (www.reactgroup.org).
“Good research and good intentions are not enough. Priorities need to be established, along with new guidelines, diagnostic methods and incentives to promote investments in pharmaceutical development. Global cooperation and concrete proposals are required.”
“Motivating companies to invest in the development of antibiotics that are affordable to people in low income countries is a challenge, and where return of investment must no longer depend on large sales volumes to minimize antibiotic resistance.”
Representatives from all relevant stakeholders, including international public health organisations, national agencies and governments, the international research community and companies within the fields of pharmaceutical development and diagnostics, will take part in the conference.
Participants will include a number of national health ministry representatives, such as Professor Samir Brahmachari, who is also Director General of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research in New Delhi, India. Zsuzsanna Jakab, the new WHO Regional Director for Europe, Professor Anthony So of Duke University in the U.S., Richard Bergström, Director General of LIF, the Swedish association for the research-based pharmaceutical industry, Donna Kusemererwa, head of an international medicine-distribution network based in Kenya, and Dr. John Clemens, Director-General of the International Vaccine Institute (IVI) in the Republic of Korea, will also attend. Members of the transatlantic task force created during the Swedish EU Presidency to address antibiotic resistance issues will also be present, as will EU Commission representatives charged with responsibility for antibiotics issues.
During the second day of the conference, four working groups will focus on developing concrete proposals for improving the antibiotic resistance situation. The design of workable models will be addressed. The hope is that such models can provide a basis for continued work towards long-term solutions.
Journalists will have the opportunity to ask questions at press meetings on the first and last days of the conference. It will also be possible to pose questions via www.uu.se, which will feature coverage of the press meetings.
Press meeting schedule:
Day 1: 10:30 a.m. in room X of the University Main Building.
Day 3: Directly following the last lecture at approximately 2:00 p.m. in room X of the University Main Building.
Journalists are also invited to attend the opening session, to be held from 12:45–2:30 p.m. on Monday, 6 September. Coverage of the opening session will be provided via www.uu.se
Place: Grand Auditorium, University Main Building, on St. Olofsgatan in Uppsala.