To New Delhi, meetings of International Council for the Minister of Health and Welfare of India


In my last column,  I have reported about the Gates foundation and Dr. Yamada.  On the next day, on 5th, I left for New Delhi.

This visit is with Professor Jeffrey Sachs, whom I have introduced in March, to participate in the meeting to be held for 2 days on the 6th and 7thas the members of the International Council for the Minister of Health and Welfare of India.  The main purpose of the meeting is to listen and exchange opinions about healthcare administration of rural area (Rural Health).   

Program and members on the panel are as per “Agenda and Meeting Presentations” of MV Project site, but Mr.Banno, my office staff (Photograph 1) has also participated. He is scheduled to enroll in the Master course of School of Public Health, Harvard University this September. He was very happy to have this opportunity to meet top people in the world in respective fields just before going to graduate school.

Dr.Sachs is Director of “The Earth Institute of Columbia University”.  I hear that his latest book will be published soon.  I am amazed by his effort.  And what a great energy! 
In the council, I met Mrs. Sachs after a long time (Photograph 2:  As I had informed in my blog of March 13, Dr. Paul Ehrlich, winner of Nobel Prize in Medicine is her grand-uncle. A pupil of Dr. Ehrlich, Sahachirou Hata, has discovered the first artificial compound “salvarsan” that is effective in the infectious disease (Spirochete).).   I also met Dr. Jaime Sepulveda, (Photograph 3:  Introduced in, “ From Nairobi- Knowing a great leader” (June 30, 2006) He is a brain of healthcare policy of Mexico along with Julio Frenk, the former Health and Welfare Minister.), whom I saw last year in Beijing at the time of the presentation of DCPP 2nd edition  (“Healthcare Policy of the World” (2006/4/2))  which he supervised with Dean Jamison. By the way, I hear that Dr. Sepulveda is moving to Gates foundation from August.

It was also a great pleasure to meet Mr. Rajat Gupta of McKinsey, who was recently selected as board chairperson of “Global Fund”. (Global Fund was established by proposal of Japan at the Okinawa summit in the year 2000. Here again, the initiative of Japan is great……) 

Anyhow, they are trying their best to overcome such poverty that cannot even have access to sufficient power supply. It seems that “ASHA” program to support the activities of women in the villages, which was planned by Dr. Mirai Chatterjee, Commissioner of WHO etc., has achieved great success.  Dr. Chatterjee is my colleague in the commision.

Next day, I had discussion with Dr. Ramadoss, Health and Welfare Minister for about 5 hours in the morning. I was impressed, as he was aware of each detail (Photograph 4, 5). It was obvious as he is a physician specializing in sanitation of rural community. He assumed the post of Health and Welfare Minister just at the age of 37 (years). This is his 3rd year as a Minister. Since the budget may go on increasing as the economic grows, the task is huge and difficult, but I think it will move in the correct direction even though time is required.

In the meanwhile, it is said that in 8 states out of 32 states in India (may be more in area) the water contains large quantity of fluorine resulting to millions of intoxicated persons. Moreover, the arsenic poisoning from water is very large in three states, and this is truely miserable. When speaking of arsenic it reminds me of the intoxication in Bangladesh, for the same cause.

I left for Singapore by night flight on 9th .


Photograph 1: With Mr. Banno, and Dr. Roger Glass (NIH Fogerty Intl Center)


Photograph 2:Dr. Sonia Erhlich Sachs, Mrs. Joanna Rubinstein (Wife of Dr. Ellis Rubinstein of NY Academy of Science, and Chief of Staff of J. Sachs) and myself


Photograph 3:From left Dr. Glass, J. Rubinstein, J. Sachs, J. Sepulveda, (?), and myself


Photograph 4:From left, myself, R. Gupta, (?), Health and Welfare Minister


Photograph 5:N. Bajpai of Columbia U. The Earth Institute, myself, J. Sachs