India not guinea pig for clinical trials: Ramadoss

By agencies   |   Thursday, 29 June 2006, 07:00 Hrs
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WASHINGTON: Asserting India is "guarded" on issues related to clinical trials, Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare Anbumani Ramadoss, denied that the country has "opened out as a guinea pig."

If you do clinical trials in India you have to be transparent. We are very guarded and will not allow our population to suffer," Ramadoss told reporters at the Indian Embassy in Washington.

Holding high-level consultations at the National Institutes of Health, the National Cancer Institute and also a meeting with the Pharmacy Association in Washington, the Minster maintained that India does not allow experimentation on humans and only Phase 2 of clinical trials were allowed with Phase 1 having to be in the country of origin.

While noting that the John Hopkins facility in Baltimore and India have had a long history of association by way of student exchanges and faculty training, during a visit to the prestigious Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland, Ramadoss said a "lot of progress" has been made between the United States and India on different fronts especially in health care and vaccines since his visit in Washington last year.

Ramadoss is scheduled to have a meeting with Secretary of Health and Human Services Michael Leavitt today to discuss issues related to health research with an accent on occupational and environmental health.

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