The Strategy on Safety and Ethics in Nanotechnology applies a process of health assembly for public hearing. Secretary General of the National Health Commission (NHC) revealed that the health assembly process has been used on different issues.
As the Health Assembly has reached its ten-year anniversary and is about to enter into a new decade in the year 2012, Dr. Amphon Jindawatthana, Secretary General of the National Health Commission (NHC) revealed that the health assembly process has been used on different issues, with the drafting of the Strategy on Safety and Ethics in Nanotechnology as one of its most crucial processes.
The Subcommittee on Safety and Risk Management of Nanotechnology has been appointed by the Executive Board of the National Nanotechnology Center which is directed by the National Science and Technology Development Agency’s (NSTDA) Board chaired by the Minister of Science and Technology. The Subcommittee has been assigned to evaluate and analyse the situation, as well as propose guidelines on nanotechnology safety and risk management. Finally, the Subcommittee has approved the 2012-2016 Strategy on Nanotechnology Safety and Ethics as a master plan to build public understanding on nanotechnology.
Dr. Amphon cited that the public hearing on this strategy was organized in the form of an issue-based health assembly in early January. Three sectors in society – relevant government agencies, academia, and the ‘people sector’ (civil society) – were invited to voice their opinions at the public hearing as a key principle of the Health Assembly.
The resolution of the Health Assembly on Nanotechnology requests the National Nanotechnology Center (NANOTEC) to propose the draft Strategy on Nanotechnology Safety and Ethics to their governing structure for approval urgently. Once approved, NANOTEC should widely publicize the Strategy because nanotechnology has become widely used in daily life as it is found in chemicals, tools and equipment. It is important to increase the public’s understanding of nanotechnology, its advantages as well as the drawbacks.
“Now that the draft strategy has come out, it is a matter of when NSTDA will propose the draft strategy to the cabinet and whether the approval will be granted or not,” Dr. Amphon stated.
Kom Chad Luek, July 4th 2011
Khaosod, July 4th 2011