The Committee reviewed a request submitted by the Department of Communicable Diseases Prevention, Control and Eradication, WHO, to modify the Model List so as to better reflect the fact that anti-leprosy medicines should be used exclusively in combination (i.e. as multidrug therapy (MDT)) and be presented in colour-coded blister packs (i.e. MDT blister packs) in order to (i) prevent antimicrobial resistance, (ii) improve patient adherence to treatment and (iii) facilitate logistics and inventory control; and that MDT blister packs can be obtained free of charge through WHO.
To this end, the Committee recommended that the following text be inserted at the head of the appropriate section of the Model List (section 6.2.3 Antileprosy medicines):
Medicines used in the treatment of leprosy should never be used except in combination (i.e. as multidrug therapy (MDT)). Combination therapy is essential to prevent the emergence of drug resistance. Colour-coded blister packs (MDT blister packs) containing standard two-medicine (pauciba-cillary leprosy) or three-medicine (multibacillary leprosy) combinations for adult and childhood leprosy should be used. MDT blister packs can be supplied free of charge through WHO.
The Committee also recommended that the same information be included in the WHO Essential Medicines Library and the WHO model formulary.