PharmaLedger Association Launches Digital Trust Ecosystem in Healthcare

photo PharmaLedger video release link

original image of PharmaLedger event and link to video release

BASEL, Switzerland, March 13, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The PharmaLedger Association™ (PLA), a not-for-profit based in Switzerland, announces the endorsement of its 3-year strategic plan to implement and promote a Digital Trust Ecosystem in healthcare (DTE-H) at its Annual General Meeting held in Lucerne, Switzerland on 1 March 2023. The member organizations also confirmed the appointment of eight Directors to its board, delivering on PLA’s core value of “Ecosystem Leadership.”

Representing the diversity of healthcare, PLA’s founding members comprise of large and small pharmaceutical companies, research organizations, patient representative organizations, non-profit organizations, technology, and healthcare service providers. PLA has confirmed its mandate as a pre-competition umbrella organization delivering common and interoperable digital solutions in the areas of Product TrustDecentralized Clinical Trials, and Supply Chain Traceability.

  • Products & Project: In Q1 2023, PLA will release the first qualified product, electronic Product Information for implementation by its members.
    In Q2 2023, the Association will continue with the development of new products in its innovation xLab, including of a product digital twin, decentralized identities, and verifiable credentials to facilitate visibility, security, traceability, and trust in all areas of healthcare.
  • Governance & Compliance: PLA will leverage its capability to develop, qualify, launch, and maintain products in healthcare’s highly regulated environment by ensuring continuous adherence to antitrust, intellectual property, data privacy, and Computerized System Assurance guidelines.
  • Ecosystem Engagement & Growth: The association will continue to onboard new members and engage with authorities, trade associations and standards development organizations, ensuring growth and financial viability.
  • Platform Technology & Security: PLA will focus on easing adoption of new solutions with its members and users while maintaining the cybersecurity benefits of its architecture.

The formation of PLA and the endorsement of its mission by diverse members of healthcare is a major milestone. This paves the way for delivery of widely trusted blockchain-based platforms with new open-source healthcare solutions to create value for patients and ecosystem stakeholders. PLA is grateful to its 20 founding members and invites all healthcare related organizations to learn more and engage towards the realization of a trusted Healthcare 4.0.

“Blockchain is a team sport. PLA has started with a diverse and strong team of members with a common vision and who believe in real change. With PLA we have the right vehicle, resources, and roadmap to take patients to a better place in healthcare,” Daniel Fritz, Executive Director, PharmaLedger Association.


PLA is the result of the successful completion of the PharmaLedger research project, a €22 million, 30-member consortium with 12 large pharma companies and 18 public partners, funded under the European Union (EU) and European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA)’s Innovative Health Initiative.

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at

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Libya’s first female deminers must deal with more than bombs

Despite the danger, her family’s fears and the potential for criticism from Libyan society at large, Farah al-Ghazali, one of Libya’s first female deminers, says she didn’t hesitate when she got the opportunity to help rid her country of landmines.

“I didn’t look back,” she told DW. “My family told me to be careful and I told them I would be. I told them about all the good things we can do for people here. I also give my family and friends advice about what they should do if they see a landmine or an explosive device,” the 30-year-old continued enthusiastically.

Although accurate data is hard to come by in Libya due to years of conflict, the Landmine and Cluster Munition Monitor reports that over the past 15 years, more than 400 Libyans have been killed by landmines or unexploded ordinances and over 3,000 have been injured. The true number is likely to be much higher though, they note, and the ongoing removal of unexploded ordinances remains a challenge.

It is a challenge that al-Ghazali and five other women are hoping to help tackle. They all trained from November 2021 until January 2022, on a course near the Libyan capital, Tripoli, and have since gone on to work for various demining organizations, including the defense ministry and the Libya-based mine action organization, Free Fields.

There were several stages to the training, another participant, Amal Mustafa, a 29-year-old arts graduate, explained. Wearing heavy helmets and wielding metal detectors, she said, the women were taught to identify the most dangerous areas that likely held mines and how to defuse and remove them.

Mustafa said that her family too had been really worried about her doing this job but that it still encouraged her to do the training.

Landmines still being planted

Landmines remain a serious problem in many parts of Libya. Although not all areas have been thoroughly surveyed, in January 2020, the United Nations estimated that the country was littered with around 20 million mines or explosive remnants.

The explosives are left over from a variety of conflicts, including from World War II, fighting with Egypt and Chad in the 1970s and 1980s, and border disputes. Since longtime dictator Muammar al-Gaddafi was deposed and killed in 2011, two opposing factions have vied to govern Libya. More landmines and improvised explosive devices, or IEDs, were allegedly planted by forces loyal to Khalifa Haftar, who continues to control much of the east of the country. In 2022, Human Rights Watch reported that the Russian mercenary group Wagner, which was supporting Haftar, had planted landmines and booby traps near Tripoli as recently as 2020.

According to rights organizations, at least 130 locals have been killed by landmines or stray explosives since Haftar’s forces withdrew from the outskirts of the city in 2021.

“This job is like a direct confrontation with death,” another of Libya’s new female deminers, Aseel al-Ferjani, 28, explained. “The mines don’t care if you make a mistake and they don’t give you a second chance.”

“They say my work is dangerous and this is true, it’s 1000% dangerous,” agreed Huda Khaled, a 33-year-old deminer originally from Iraq. But, she added, as an Iraqi she’s seen worse. “We spent years watching explosions in our markets and streets. The danger of demining is similar to our daily lives there,” she told DW.

Libyan society disapproves

The obvious dangers are not the only challenges that the female deminers have to deal with, explained Mahmoud al-Alam, who trained the women.

In Libya, the job was long considered to be something only men should be doing, he said. “The participants faced many challenges because of customs and traditions in a conservative country that limit women’s work in general. So you can imagine what it’s like in a field like demining.”

“[The field] is traditionally quite male dominated because of its historic affiliation with militaries,” agreed Abigail Jones, program manager for gender, diversity, equality and inclusion at the Geneva International Centre for Humanitarian Demining (GICHD). “So historically, women have faced more barriers to employment, particularly in explosive disposal or demining roles.”

But this has been changing since humanitarian demining began in 1988 in Afghanistan, Jones continued. There is now an unquestioned international push to promote gender equality in the sector, she explained.

She pointed out that the first all-female demining team was created by a Norwegian aid organization in Kosovo in 1999 and added that today there were female deminers working in 25 different countries, including in Iraq, Lebanon, Sudan, Myanmar, Cambodia and Jordan.

A 2019 survey of international non-governmental organizations working in this field found that now, on average, women made up about 20% of staff engaged in active demining jobs.

Who is best at demining?

As more women have entered the sector, there’s been some discussion about which gender is actually better at the job.

The criticism around women’s involvement has included tenuous arguments about females being physically weaker and supposedly taking longer to clear explosives, as well as fears that they might need to take more time off work due to things like maternity leave.

But others argue that women might actually be better at demining because, as one study put it, they are reportedly more cautious and patient and tend to work more collaboratively in teams. That is, they don’t feel the need to rush in to prove how tough they are.

A more definitive answer to the question was provided by a study published in the autumn 2022 Journal of Conventional Weapons Destruction. Researchers looked at demining programs in 14 different countries, investigating how many square meters of land different genders had cleared and their availability to work regularly, as well as how many days they took off.

“Stereotypes and unproven assumptions persist,” the researchers concluded. But, “a quantitative analysis of the data found no meaningful difference in operational productivity or availability to work … based on gender.”

Female deminers transforming communities

Including women in demining work is not just a matter of offering half the population equal opportunities, Jones from the GICHD pointed out. She said that studies from places such as Sri Lanka and Lebanon where women deminers are more established showed that their inclusion can “transform gender norms at the community level.”

“This manifests in a number of ways. It helps challenge perceptions that might exist about women’s ability to perform the same jobs as men. It can help to increase women’s influence over decision making at the community level, but also within the family. And it also provides them with financial independence,” Jones noted. “So the transformative impact of employing women in these roles is quite significant.”

As for newly-trained Libyan deminer, Farah al-Ghazali, she is just pleased that she was able to “defy conventional thinking” in her homeland.

“I want to show that women can do what men can and I want to continue to do my best,” she said. “Every year I get better, I get training and I get more experience, I am always learning things. And,” she concludes happily, “I know I am helping people through my work.”


Discussing the strengthening of cooperation between the Ministry of Planning and World Bank Group.

Tripoli The Minister of Planning, Mohamed Al-Zeydani, discussed with the Reforms and Development Team World Bank Group’s Public Finance Department in Libya, “Winston Cole”, enhancing cooperation between the two parts.

The meeting, which was held yesterday, discussed the latest developments of the budget classification project, consolidated accounts guide, and the government financial information management system, and what has been worked on in coordination with the relevant government agencies, in addition to the observations of the Ministry of Planning in this regard.

The Minister stressed support for all initiatives aimed at strengthening the management of public finances in Libya, and all programs aimed at applying international best practices in the area of public finance management and benefiting from the expertise of the World Bank and joint cooperation to implement other programs in a way that enhances the principles of disclosure and transparency, and achieves national priorities in various areas of development.

Source: Libyan News Agency

Misurata Port Customs: Seizing 1,700,000 narcotic pills on board a ship coming from Europe.

Misurata The head of Misurata seaport customs Centre, Colonel, Khaled Al-Dhala, announced the seizure of a shipment of narcotics on board a ship coming from Europe.

Al-Dhala explained that the customs men, in cooperation with the Joint Operations Force and under the supervision of the Public Prosecution, seized 1.7 million narcotic pills on board the ship (Grand Texas), which was carrying the Italian flag, coming from the port of Antwerp in Belgium.

Al-Dhala stated that the seized quantity was hidden inside four small cars and a medium-sized container truck.

Source: Libyan News Agency

Bashagha welcomes Bathily’s initiative to organize elections and stresses Libyan ownership to solve current crisis

Benghazi, The head of the Libyan government affiliated to the House of Representatives, Fathi Bashagha, welcomed Monday the initiative of the UN envoy, Abdoulaye Bathily, based on breaking the political stalemate and organizing elections.

This came during a meeting between Bashagha and Bathily, on Monday in Benghazi, as part of the consultations that the UN envoy is conducting with the various Libyan political parties regarding his initiative to hold elections before the end of 2023 and the mechanisms for their implementation in agreement with the various parties.

Bashagha said in tweets on his Twitter account after, ‘I stressed the Libyan ownership to solve the current crisis and make more efforts to increase the rapprochement between the House of Representatives and the High Council of State to implement the electoral laws as soon as possible’.

He added, ‘During my meeting with the UN envoy Abdoulaye Bathily in Benghazi, I reaffirmed the legitimacy of the Libyan government and its full readiness to support the efforts of the UN mission to achieve the aspirations of the Libyan people for change and democratic transition and to make 2023 year of elections.

Source: Libyan News Agency

Haftar and Bathily stress importance of supporting HoR and HCS efforts to finalize constitutional rule.

Tripoli, The Commander-in-Chief of the General Command Forces, Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar met, on Monday, with the UN envoy to Libya, Abdoulaye Bathily.

The media office of the General Command said that the UN envoy briefed Haftar on the international plan of the United Nations mission for the next phase, which will lead to holding presidential and parliamentary elections.

The office added that the two sides stressed during the meeting the importance of supporting the efforts of the House of Representatives and the High Council of State to complete the constitutional rule.

The UN envoy, Abdoulaye Bathily, is visiting Benghazi as part of his consultations with the various political parties to implement his initiative, which he presented to the Security Council, regarding the mechanism for completing the presidential and parliamentary elections before the end of 2023.

Source: Libyan News Agency