The Department of Biotechnology, Ministry of Science and Technology, Government of India along with Grand Challenges Canada, funded by the Government of Canada, will partner an investment of $ 2.5 million in health innovations in India.
The innovations will be focusing on maternal, new born and child health and Visceral Leishmaniasis elimination.
While maternal, newborn and child health is a major challenge for the Government of India and Canada’s flagship development priority, India is one of the six countries that bear 90 percent of the global burden of Visceral Leishmaniasis.
This was stated in the Joint statement issued by the two sides on the occasion of meetings of Prime Minister Narendra Modi with the Canadian Prime Minister Stephan Harper.
Welcoming the collaboration between Department of Biotechnology of his Ministry and Canada, Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister for Science & Technology & Earth Sciences, said, ‘’Developing affordable innovations to mitigate disease burden is a major challenge for India. Partnering Canada allows us to tap into our combined capacity and strength to find solutions for disease control and improved maternal and child care”.
The Minister of State for Science & Technology and Earth Sciences, YS Chowdary added “Innovation-driven technology development underpins sustainable and inclusive growth. To partner with Canada, a major hub for innovation and start-ups, provides the right stimulus at the right time for India’s drive for equitable growth".
“India has historic and close links with Canada in Science and Technology. Disease and poor nutrition affect early growth including the development of brains. Using our shared strengths to collaborate and address these problems will directly help the lives of many and also demonstrate ways of scaling such interventions to populations which need it most”, said Dr. K. VijayRaghavan, Secretary Department of Biotechnology, Government of India.
“Through Grand Challenges Canada, the Canadian government is supporting innovative solutions to global health problems for those who need it the most. These new bold ideas and renewed support for existing and scale-up innovations will make a difference in the lives of many people, including children,” said Dr. Peter A. Singer, Chief Executive Officer of Grand Challenges Canada.
GCC has also partnered with the National Council of Indo-Canadians to ensure engagement of Indian diaspora in Canada in the Grand Challenges partnership.
“The longstanding relationship between India and Canada has grown to include collaboration in many fields, including global health. I am proud to see that this partnership will improve the lives of so many children in India, equipping a whole generation for a better future,” said Sudhir Handa, Chair, National Council of Indo Canadians.