PAHO Director meets with President of Argentina to discuss regional vaccine development and other priority health issues

3 Oct 2023
Director de la OPS se reúne con el Presidente de Argentina para dialogar sobre desarrollo regional de vacunas y otros temas de salud prioritarios
3 Oct 2023

Buenos Aires, 3 October 2023 (PAHO/WHO) – The Director of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), Dr. Jarbas Barbosa, today met with the President of Argentina, Alberto Fernandez, where they discussed the need to strengthen the production of vaccines and medical supplies in Latin America and the Caribbean in order to ensure regional self-sufficiency.

As part of these efforts, Dr. Barbosa highlighted the agreement signed on Monday with the country's health, science and technology authorities for the transfer of technology to the National Administration of Laboratories and Health Institutes (ANLIS-Malbrán). This agreement will focus on the development of lipid nanoparticles, essential elements in the production of mRNA vaccines.

President Alberto Fernández with the director of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), Jarbas Barbosa, the Minister of Health, Carla Vizzotti, and the PAHO representative in Argentina, Eva Llopis.
President Alberto Fernández with the director of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), Jarbas Barbosa, the Minister of Health, Carla Vizzotti, and the PAHO representative in Argentina, Eva Llopis.

In 2021, the Argentine biopharmaceutical company, Sinergium Biotech, was selected by the World Health Organization (WHO) to participate in the technology transfer initiative for the production of mRNA vaccines, which could eventually be offered to other countries in the region through PAHO's Regional Revolving Funds.

ANLIS-Malbrán will now contribute to the production chain with the development of nanoparticles. In addition, the National Agency for the Promotion of Research, Technological Development and Innovation (Agencia I+D+i) will also participate in the development of research and capacity building.

The future development of these supplies in the country will help reduce the region's external dependence and move towards more equitable access to vaccines.

A few days prior to the inauguration of the V World Mental Health Summit in Buenos Aires, the PAHO Director and the Argentine President analyzed the challenges in this area following the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, and the country's progress in the areas of human rights and inclusion.

The meeting at the Casa Rosada presidential palace was also attended by the PAHO/WHO representative in Argentina, Eva Jané Llopis, and the Minister of Health of Argentina, Carla Vizzotti.

The PAHO Director's official visit to Argentina, which began on Monday, includes meetings with health, science and technology and defense authorities, as well with parliamentarians and representatives of the United Nations and PAHO Collaborating Centers in the country. Dr. Barbosa will also visit the Garrahan Hospital and the ANLIS-Malbrán and Sinergium Biotech laboratories.