Taiwan Global Health Forum looks at health and urbanization

Scholars and government officials gather to exchange ideas and brainstorm solutions to health challenges and new sustainable goals

15th Global Health Forum (Photo by Office of the President)

15th Global Health Forum (Photo by Office of the President)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The 15th Global Health Forum in Taiwan is being held by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Health and Welfare (MOHW) from Oct. 20-21, at the Taipei International Convention Center.

The topic of this year's forum is “Urban Life of the 21st Century: Sustainable, Safe and Healthy.” Around 1,500 people from 33 countries are participating, including U.S. Deputy Director for Infectious Diseases Jay C. Butler, according to CNA.

During the forum, former Green Party of Canada head Professor Trevor Hancock noted that Earth has entered the “Anthropocene,” a geological period where the impact of human activities on Earth is causing extreme changes. Since only one Earth exists, people must think of ways to maintain health and welfare with limited resources, and one strategy to achieve such a goal is “Healthy City 2.0," the MOHW cited him as saying.

The implementation of National Health Insurance, the “Long-Term Care Plan 2.0,” and the role of health amid urbanization are also topics being discussed during the two-day forum.

CEOWORLD magazine in August ranked Taiwan's healthcare system as the best out of 89 countries, Taiwanese Vice President Chen Chien-jen (陳建仁) pointed out at the event. Calling Taiwan pivotal to the Indo-Pacific region, he said the rise of cross-border epidemics has prompted Taiwan to promote transnational epidemic prevention measures and share medical information throughout the region.

In efforts to align Taiwan’s medical system with international standards, Chen cited the country's efforts to increase participation in the International Council for Harmonisation of Technical Requirements for Pharmaceuticals for Human Use; as well as plans to apply to the Center of Excellence to provide relevant training for APEC member economies and authorities, said the Office of the President.

In a press release, MOHW expressed its hope that solutions to future challenges and new sustainable goals can be devised through the forum.