prepared in collaboration with the WHO Collaborating Centre for International Drug Monitoring, Uppsala, Sweden
The aim of this Newsletter is to disseminate information on the safety and efficacy of pharmaceutical products, based on information received from our network of "drug information officers" and other sources such as specialized bulletins and journals, as well as partners in WHO. The information is produced in the form of résumés in English, full texts of which may be obtained on request from:
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This newsletter is also available on our Internet website: http://www.who.int/medicines
Further information on adverse reactions may be obtained from the WHO Collaborating Centre for International Drug Monitoring, Stora Torget 3, 753 20 Uppsala, Sweden
News & Issues
This is the last issue for the year 2005 and includes the usual sections on Regulatory Matters and Safety of Medicines. The article on nevirapine under Problems of Current Interest highlights the need to support improved access and use of medicines with matching patient-monitoring facilities. This has been an eventful year in pharmacovigilance. Rofecoxib, withdrawn towards the end of 2004, continued to occupy our interest with many debates and discussions on the lessons learnt and the way forward. Drug safety in children received a lot of attention and several initiatives are underway for establishing guidelines for the safe use of medicines in this vulnerable population. The 'donation' of expired medicines and poor quality devices such as contaminated syringes to tsunami hit regions highlighted the quality and safety issues in drug donation practices, calling attention to the expanding role for pharmacovigilance centres in promoting medicine safety. The year ended with a meeting of the WHO Advisory Committee on Safety of Medicinal Products which reviewed various issues on drug safety; the Committee's recommendations will be published early next year.
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