The 6th edition of the World Ayurveda Congress begins today and will go on till 9th November 2014, in Pragati Maidan, Delhi.
In keeping with the past practice, there will be four plenary sessions, 25 parallel sessions as well as providing scope for poster presentations.
The associated events which are being planned include a Seminar on Medicinal Plants, a business meet coordinated by Pharmexil, an Editors Conclave, and international Delegates Assembly and a Guru shishya meet.
The Focal Theme of the 6th World Ayurveda Congress & Arogya Expo 2014
Among the several focal themes considered, ‘Health Challenges and Ayurveda’ has been finalized to be the theme of this edition of the Congress. For the past 30 years, the large, densely populated and enormously varied Republic of India has made impressive efforts in the field of health. However, the unfinished agenda must address deficiencies in service outreach, government expenditures, high out-of-pocket costs, and limited health insurance coverage. There are also healthcare infrastructure gaps and disparities across the Indian states and between urban and rural populatons, measured by such indicators as the number of hospital beds and doctor-patient ratios.
India’s overall health indicators remain below international averages and account for 21% of the world’s global burden of disease. Basic sanitation, nutrition, and living standards need improvement. And although important progress has been made with some diseases, not all communicable diseases have been brought under satisfactory control. In addition, the rapid changes in India’s society and lifestyles have ledto a surge in non-communicable diseases (NCDs), comprising mainly heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and chronic respiratory disease/asthma.
The prevalence of modifiable NCD risk factors such as use of tobacco, alcohol abuse, poor diet, and sedentary lifestyles has risen steadily over the past 30 years.Air pollution – both indoor and outdoor – is also an important risk factor due to its role in cancer, chronic lung disease, and cardiovascular disease. As life expectancy increases, the burden of disease in old age increases. Currently, 5.3% of India’s population is aged 65 or older, with the number projected to increase to 10.2% by 2035. This age group is the most affected by illness, and nearly all NCDs increase in prevalence with age.
It is now time to realise the potential of Ayurveda and develop an action plan that will improve health care in India, and serve as a model for public health globally. The aim of the 6th WAC (World Ayurveda Congress) is to develop such a vision and strategy for public action.