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Washington DC, 20 May, 2019 (PAHO/WHO) - Representatives of the Unit of Medicines and Health Technologies of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) participated in the International Seminar towards the creation of a National Health Technology Assessment Agency in Argentina (known in Spanish as AGNET), which took place in the city of Buenos Aires, on 2 May, 2019.

"We are proud to lead a seminar aimed at strengthening the establishment of a National Health Technology Assessment Agency in Argentina," said Adolfo Rubinstein, Secretary of Health of Argentina, during the opening of the seminar. “In the Region, and particularly in Argentina, we have gone through the epidemiological and demographic transition that represents a considerable challenge to the health systems."

The AGNET will implement Health Technology Assessment in the country, conducting studies and evaluations of medicines, medical products, and instruments, techniques and procedures to determine the opportunity and way of incorporating them into the health system.

PAHO has launched various initiatives to promote and strengthen the process of health technology assessment in member countries. In recent years, PAHO has carried out technical cooperation missions to Argentina to work on issues related to the regulation, evaluation, and health technologies management. Among them, PAHO supported the country in the implementation of the AGNET, technical cooperation towards the development of a Medicines Policy, and in the construction of mechanisms to reduce the prices of medicines.

In the same framework, the X Meeting of the Health Technology Assessment Network of the Americas (RedETSA) was held on 7-8 November, 2018, in the city of Buenos Aires, where more than 190 experts and health authorities of the Americas met to discuss the role of the Health Technology Assessment in expanding effective and equitable access to medicines.

"Argentina is a pioneer and reference in this field that can complete a cycle with the institutionalization of the AGNET agency that will make it one of the regional leaders in strengthening the processes of evaluation and incorporation of health technology," said Alexandre Lemgruber, Regional Adviser in Health Technology Management at PAHO, during the seminar.

More than 400 people attended the event, including international experts, representatives of public and private hospitals, social security representatives, members of the Health Technology Assessment International (HTAi) and academic institutions with experience in health technologies assessment.