Health experts told the delegates from over 80 countries that more people die from chronic diseases than from infectious diseases such as Aids and tuberculosis in developing countries.
They said most governments unfortunately are not aware of this scenario, which can be addressed by making essential drugs for chronic conditions available and affordable to those who need them.
Over 600 experts on essential drugs met in Antalya, Turkey for the conference which is held every seven years.
Earlier conferences were held in 1997 and 2004, both in Thailand.
This time ICIUM was held in Turkey to allow for more delegates from the Middle East to take part.
The conference was originally planned to take place in Alexandria, Egypt, but had to be relocated in view of the political unrest in the region.
It also emerged during the conference that low life-saving treatments for malaria are not available in private pharmacies in some African countries.