Event Highlights: The Indo-Pacific Regulatory Strengthening Program (RSP) Forum, 2022
Since its inception in 2018, the Indo-Pacific Regulatory Strengthening Program (RSP) has been engaged in activities designed to build the capabilities of regional regulatory authorities and facilitate collaboration between regulators, as well as with disease control programs and partner organisations. One such activity is the annual RSP forum, a meeting that brings together the RSP implementing partners, led by Australia’s Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) and Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), regional NRAs from Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Papua New Guinea, Thailand and Viet Nam, national disease control programs, product development partnerships and other technical assistance providers.
In December 2020 and 2021, virtual RSP Forums were held in order to provide partner regulators with an opportunity to present their achievements and challenges, and highlight ongoing priorities, particularly those related to addressing the COVID-19 pandemic.
In May 2022, a hybrid meeting was held with face to face participants gathering in Singapore for the event. This recent forum re-established a focus on infectious diseases that present a threat to populations in the Indo-Pacific, such as malaria, tuberculosis, and HIV, whilst also addressing the ongoing response to the pandemic.
The objectives of the meeting were to:
- Hear perspectives from regulators on the continuing challenges of responding to the pandemic and the availability of effective COVID 19 vaccines, therapies and diagnostics
- Discuss responses to other infectious diseases, including malaria, tuberculosis and HIV
- Confirm RSP activities for 2022-2023, including opportunities for face-to-face engagement
- Highlight the ongoing work of the program and its partners
With the main thematic sessions covering: Responding to the COVID pandemic, Strategies for Malaria Elimination and Regulatory Reliance in Action.
The meeting was attended by senior officials from participating RSP countries, observer countries and key partners including the World Health Organisation (WHO), United States Pharmacopoeia (USP), the Centre for Regulatory Excellence (CoRE), Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND), Medicines for Malaria Venture (MMV), TB Alliance and the Asia Pacific Leaders Malaria Alliance (APLMA). Other participating organisations included the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), the Center for Global Development and the Centre for Innovation in Regulatory Science (CIRS).