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A pioneering academic conference will bring together, for the first time, people from all over the world dealing with the problem of poor quality medicines and their impact on public health. The Medicine Quality & Public Health conference will take place at Keble College, Oxford, 23-28 Sept 2018. It will provide a unique opportunity for health authorities, scientists, pharmacists, lawyers and international organisations to discuss the problem and outline the necessary steps to tackle the issue on a global scale.

Numerous multicoloured pills

The proliferation of poor quality medicines is an important but neglected public health problem, threatening millions of people all over the world, both in developing and wealthy countries. Although – rightly - there has been much attention to improving access to affordable medicines, there has been less emphasis on ensuring that they are good quality or not altogether falsified.

“All over the world, medicines regulatory authorities, research groups, international organisations, law enforcement agencies and other key stakeholders, including the pharmaceutical industry, are working hard to keep patients safe and to try to ensure that the benefits of modern medicine are delivered,” says Prof Paul Newton, Head of the Medicine Quality Group at the Infectious Diseases Data Observatory (IDDO), Director of the Oxford clinical research unit in Laos and the instigator of the conference.

“However, there has never been an opportunity for the diverse stakeholders involved in medicine quality and drug regulation to come together within the framework of a dedicated academic conference to share ideas and expertise. One of the event’s key objectives is to develop a consensus statement to be widely disseminated to interested parties and policy makers, establishing the conference as a turning point in our collective approach to tackling poor quality medicines.”

The conference was inspired by a successful multidisciplinary annual course on the Quality of Medical Products & Public Health, which has been held since 2015 at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and Boston University. This year the course and conference will run sequentially, allowing participants to combine in-depth training with networking and scientific discussion.

Discounts and fellowships are available for participants from low- and middle-income countries.

If you are interested in attending the conference tickets are nearly sold out, please visit the conference website or email mqph2018@ndm.ox.ac.uk.

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