Use of Essential Drugs (The)
Ninth Report of the WHO Expert Committe e (Including the revised Model List of Essential Drugs)
Technical Report Series, No 895
World Health Organization
ISBN-13    9789241208956 ISBN-10    9241208953
Order Number    11000895   
Price    CHF    14.00 / US$    16.80 Developing countries:    CHF    9.80
English     2000        61   pages
Table of contents
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Translation(s) available
Presents and explains the eleventh model list of essential drugs issued by WHO as part of its efforts to extend the benefits of modern drugs to the world's population. Intended to guide the selection of drugs in countries where the need is great and resources are small, the list identifies a core group of prophylactic and therapeutic substances judged capable of meeting the vast majority of health needs and thus deserving priority in purchasing decisions and procurement schemes.
WHO model lists, the first of which was issued in 1977, are regularly updated to ensure that recommendations are in line with the latest data on the comparative safety, efficacy, and costs of specific drugs as well as their relevance to priority health problems. Factors of stability, quality control, and international availability are also considered when validating and revising the lists.
The first part of the report provides updated information on several components of national drug policy necessary to ensure that essential drugs, corresponding to essential health needs, are available at all times in adequate amounts and in the proper dosage. Information includes guidelines for the selection of pharmaceutical dosage forms, the importance of bioavailability in assessments of drug quality, recommended use of the Anatomical Therapeutic Chemical classification system and the Defined Daily Dose as a measuring unit when conducting drug utilization studies, and the growing problem of resistance to some of the widely available and relatively cheap antimicrobials included in the list.
In view of the increasingly high levels of resistance to standard anti-tuberculosis drugs, the report designated nine drugs and formulations as essential for the treatment of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis. The report also describes plans for a major revision of the procedures used when updating the model list.
The eleventh WHO model list of essential drugs is presented in the second part, together with an explanation of changes made when revising the list. Organized according to therapeutic group, the list includes information on route of administration, dosage forms, and strengths for each of 306 drugs. To qualify for inclusion, a drug must be supported by sound data demonstrating safety, efficacy, and consistent performance in a variety of medical settings. The report concludes with an explanation of changes made in the list. These include the addition of nevirapine for the prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV, of artesunate for the treatment of malaria resistant to older drugs, and of levonorgestrel for emergency contraception.