To enhance collaboration and cooperation in health research, especially in the field of Integrated Medicine, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) under the Health Ministry and the AYUSH Ministry signed an MOA (Memorandum of Agreement) in New Delhi.
According to VK Paul, a member (Health) of NITI Aayog, this move will enable Ayush Departments in the All-India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) to evolve into the departments of Integrated Medicine across the entire AIIMS infrastructure In India.
The MOA will also explore the areas of convergence and synergy between two organisations for integrative health research and strengthening research capacity. It will also look into the efforts to conduct high-quality clinical trials jointly on identified areas/disease conditions of national importance with promising therapies of the AYUSH System to generate evidence for broader acceptance.
Speaking on occasion, the Indian Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya explained that collaboration would promote high-impact integrative research to generate evidence in priority areas of national importance in healthcare using modern scientific methods.
As per the Health Ministry, “A joint working group shall be created between the Ministry Of AYUSH and ICMR, which will meet quarterly for exploring further areas of collaboration and work on deliverables.
Both institutions shall formulate and implement joint research projects and programmes and allow joint supervision of the said activities as well as design and conduct conferences, workshops seminars jointly with the active participation of researchers interested in Integrative Healthcare.”
Integrated Health Research is a trans-disciplinary, holistic approach to investigate the benefits of co-administering the conventional (traditional/complementary/alternative) medical practice to identify comprehensive health practises for individuals and the community.
“Joint efforts will be in place to conduct high-quality clinical trials on identified areas/ diseased conditions of national importance with promising integrative therapies to generate evidence for wider acceptance,” said the Minister. This will help Ayurveda to boost and further build an identity based on scientific evidence and move towards offering patients the benefit of integrated medicine in India.
In addition, as part of the collaboration, scholars/trainees/ researchers/ faculties will have access to advanced instrumentation systems and other infrastructural facilities as per the prevailing rules and regulations of the organisation for the duration of the visit and joint research programme.
“Both shall work towards developing and renewing cooperation for facilitating scientific validation and provision and providing evidence for AYUSH systems by other countries,” said the Ministry.