Title: Association of Manufacturers of Free Access Medicines Organizes 1st Self-Care for Health Meeting

Subtitle: Initiative aims to strengthen national culture of self-care and prevention

The Association of Manufacturers of Free Access Medicines (AFAMELA) has joined forces with the Health Commission of the Chamber of Deputies to organize the 1st Self-Care for Health Meeting, scheduled to take place on July 26. This initiative aims to raise awareness about the importance of self-care and prevention in the comprehensive well-being of society.

The meeting, which coincides with International Self-Care Day on July 24, will gather representatives from government agencies such as the Ministry of Health and the IMSS, as well as specialists from national and international organizations including UNAM and the Aspen Institute. Together, they will discuss various perspectives on self-care, including the significance of universal health coverage, bioethics, active life cycles, and healthy aging, among others.

This event aligns with AFAMELA’s efforts to promote knowledge and responsible use of over-the-counter medicines and self-care practices. Earlier this year, AFAMELA collaborated with the Global Self-Care Federation to conduct a study called the “Self-Care Readiness Index.” The research examined the impact of public policies on self-care in ten countries worldwide, including Mexico.

The Mexican case study revealed that nearly 80% of those surveyed felt educated and empowered to seek products and engage in self-care practices, thanks to community support programs. Sergio Gómez, President of the Board of Directors of AFAMELA, emphasized the significance of these results and highlighted that more than 60% of well-being improvements rest on self-care and prevention. Gómez stressed the need to continue raising awareness about illnesses, symptoms, and the proper use of over-the-counter medications to further enhance the well-being of Mexican society.

The study also revealed that over 15 million Mexicans rely on the national health system for common ailments like flu, diarrhea, muscle pain, and headaches. Gómez underscored the importance of rational use and proper identification of over-the-counter medicines, stating that their safety lies in adhering to the instructions on the labels.

Ricardo Ramírez, the Executive Director of AFAMELA, expressed his belief that forums like the Self-Care for Health Meeting present an exceptional opportunity to empower patients and sensitize stakeholders to the benefits of a healthier population. Ramírez called for a comprehensive public policy that supports preventive practices and has national coverage.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), self-care encompasses physical, psychological, and social well-being. Ramírez emphasized that self-care should not solely be an individual responsibility but a collective commitment. He further suggested integrating these topics into medical school curricula, medical congresses, awareness campaigns, and continuing education activities.

The 1st Self-Care for Health Meeting will take place at the Chamber of Deputies on July 26 at 5:00 p.m., followed by an Illumination Ceremony as a symbolic act of commitment to self-care. AFAMELA’s aim is to lay the foundations for enhancing the national culture of self-care, ultimately leading to a healthier society.

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