India and the United States are working together to develop vaccines against diseases such as tuberculosis and dengue, Washington's envoy to New Delhi Kenneth Juster said today, describing issues related to health as an "important shared" responsibility. In his first policy speech after taking over as the ambassador to India, Juster said the two nations were also engaged in the "Global Health Security Agenda", which included acting to combat anti-microbial resistance and strengthening the detection and prevention of epidemics. The agenda is a partnership of nations, international bodies and non-governmental stakeholders on health. "Issues related to health, in particular, are an important shared responsibility, not just because of their direct impact on the safety and well-being of our people, but because of their indirect impact on economic productivity and overall social welfare," he said. Juster said India and the US were looking at novel ways to manage disease. "We jointly developed the first indigenous Indian vaccine for rotavirus, and are now cooperating to develop vaccines to combat tuberculosis, dengue and other emerging global threats," he added. The health agenda of the two countries addressed the complex problem of HIV as well as the growing burden of non- communicable diseases, the envoy said. "We are also engaged in the Global Health Security Agenda, which includes acting to combat antimicrobial resistance and strengthen detection, prevention (of) and response to epidemics," he said. Juster said a fourth pillar of the India-US partnership was the focus on sustainable and inclusive development with regard to the welfare of the people.
This included critical work in science, technology and health, he pointed out. "Our US-India Science and Technology Endowment Fund has supported a range of innovative projects, including those to advance health care, improve the environment and modernise agriculture. "And beyond earth and into space, NASA and ISRO scientists frequently collaborate demonstrating that there truly are no boundaries to our partnership," he said.
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