Press Release

International Symposium for Senior Pharmaceutical Policy Makers Friday 30 August 2013

The Minister for Primary Care, Alex White TD, will tomorrow (30 August 2013) open a Symposium for international governmental pharmaceutical policy makers in the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. Over 80 delegates representing approximately 25 countries from around the world are attending the Symposium. The delegates are senior officials from international organisations and government Ministries worldwide, with responsibility for pharmacy and pharmaceutical policy and regulation.

The main theme of the Symposium is ‘Achieving Responsible Use of Medicines – Real Patients, Real Policy, What Really Works?’ It follows on from the October 2012 Health Ministers’ Summit in Amsterdam on ‘The Benefits of Responsible Use of Medicines’.

Medicines are one of the most widely used and cost-effective interventions within health systems. Even though medicines play such an important role in the healthcare of patients, health systems today face challenges in financing medicines, in ensuring that the infrastructure for delivering medicines to patients works effectively, and in promoting patient awareness of the importance of taking their medicines correctly.

Responsible use of medicines involves ensuring that activities, capabilities, and existing resources are aligned so that patients receive the right medicines at the right time, use them appropriately, and benefit from those medicines. Through a series of presentations, workshops and panel discussions at the Symposium, pharmaceutical policy-makers from all over the world will consider and share experiences of how to enhance the responsible use of medicines by governments, within health systems and by patients.

Welcoming Symposium delegates to Ireland, Minister White said “Ireland is proud to host this Symposium for international Pharmaceutical Policy-makers in Dublin. The Symposium offers a unique opportunity for officials from international organisations, such as the WHO, Council of Europe and PAHO, as well as governmental officials, to come together to discuss pharmaceutical policy and share experiences of promoting the responsible use of medicines within health systems. Achieving responsible use of medicines is an important measure in securing the future sustainability of health services.”

Dr Kees de Joncheere, Director of Essential Medicines and Health Products at the World Health Organisation, who will be speaking at the symposium, said “at WHO we recognise that initiatives to promote responsible use of medicines present concrete opportunities for health systems to coordinate health policies, programmes and funding, as well as health professionals and patients with the goal of ensuring timely and appropriate use of medicines to achieve the best possible patient outcomes. For pharmaceutical policy-makers internationally, there is real value in working collectively to share experience of responsible use initiatives so that healthcare resources are used to best effect for the benefit of all patients.”

The Symposium has been organised to coincide with the 73rd International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) World Congress of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences taking place at the Convention Centre Dublin between 31 August and 5 September 2013. The FIP World Congress is jointly hosted by the International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) which is a global federation of national associations of pharmacists and pharmaceutical scientists, and the Pharmaceutical Society of Ireland (PSI), the pharmacy regulatory body in Ireland.

FIP 2013 is expected to attract 3,000 pharmacists, pharmaceutical scientists and academics from all over the world to Ireland to discuss a wide range of issues relevant to global healthcare and pharmacy practice. Minister for Health, Dr. James Reilly, who will officially open the FIP 2013 World Congress on Sunday 1st September said “it is a great honour for Ireland, once again, to host the FIP World Congress after almost 40 years. In that time we have seen huge advances in medicines and healthcare with people now living healthier lives for much longer. With these benefits come challenges, which inform the theme of this Congress: how best to provide care to patients with complex needs? With 3,000 delegates from over 100 countries attending this Congress in Dublin it is clear that the Congress will address one of the most important challenges facing health systems globally”

ENDS

Notes for Editors

Further information on the Symposium for Senior Pharmaceutical Policy Makers

Speakers at the Symposium are:

  • Dr Kees de Joncheere, Director of Essential Medicines and Health Products at the World Health Organisation will discuss the topic of getting medicines to patients who need them. Ensuring secure and continuous access to necessary medicines is a core focus of the WHO and is a public health issue which is relevant in all health systems.
  • Dr Durhane Wong-Rieger, Chairperson of the International Alliance of Patients’ Organizations (IAPO) will speak from the perspective of patients in promoting responsible use of medicines.
  • Mr Kim Bessell, Assistant Secretary & Principal Pharmacy Advisor at the Department of Health and Ageing, Australia will discuss how new community pharmacy services can be aligned and evaluated in order to promote responsible use of medicines and will give an overview of how this has been achieved in Australia.
  • Dr Susanne Keitel, Director of the European Directorate for the Quality of Medicines & HealthCare (EDQM) at the Council of Europe will outline a model for implementing pharmaceutical care which aims to ensure that responsible provision of medicines therapy achieves outcomes that improve the quality of life of patients.
  • Dr José Luis Castro, Regional Advisor in Rational Use of Medicines at the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) will speak on building pharmacovigilance (adverse event reporting) capacity to improve patient safety and the safe use of medicines.

In addition, delegates attending the Symposium have also been given the opportunity to make short flash presentations on pharmaceutical policy initiatives in their countries which are relevant to the responsible use of medicines:

  • Dr Hanne Bak Pedersen, Programme Manager from the WHO Regional Office for Europe will give a flash presentation on the WHO Europe’s work on antimicrobial resistance which is particularly concerned with monitoring consumption of antimicrobial medicines in non-EU countries in Europe.
  • Dr Ulla Närhi, Ministerial Adviser at the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health in Finland will give an overview of the national Medicines Policy 2020 developed in Finland.
  • Ms Abida Haq, Head of the Pharmacy Department, Kuala Lumpur Hospital & Ministry of Health of Malaysia will speak about a Malaysian initiative to establish a medication therapy adherence clinic for psoriasis patients.
  • Mr Einar Magnússon, Director of Pharmaceutical Affairs at the Ministry of Welfare in Iceland will give an overivew of initiatives taken in Iceland in the area of pharmaceutical policy during the financial crises.
  • Dr Susy Olave Quispe, from the International and EU Affairs Division of the Spanish Agency of Medicines and Medical Devices, will outline an ongoing initiative to build capacity of policy-makers in the Ibero-American Medicines Competent Authorities Network.

Further information:

The Symposium for senior pharmaceutical policy makers took place in the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. Over 80 delegates representing approximately 25 countries from around the world attended the Symposium. The delegates in attendance were senior officials from international organisations and government Ministries worldwide, with responsibility for pharmacy and pharmaceutical policy and regulation.

The main theme of the Symposium was ‘Achieving Responsible Use of Medicines – Real Patients, Real Policy, What Really Works?’ It followed on from the October 2012 Health Ministers’ Summit in Amsterdam on ‘The Benefits of Responsible Use of Medicines’.

Documents from the Symposium

Please click on the links below for the following Symposium documents:

Symposium for Senior Pharmaceutical Policy Makers 29-30 August, 2013

PDF 216kb

Introduction to the Symposium

PDF 168kb

Symposium Programme

PDF 172kb

Abida Haq – Psoriasis Medication Therapy Adherence Clinics Malaysia

PDF 277kb

Durhane Wong Rieger IAPO – Responsible Use of Medicines Patient Role

PDF 584kb

Einar Magnusson – Pharmaceuticals in Financial Crises Iceland

PDF 155kb

Hanne Bak Pedersen – WHO Europe Antimicrobial Resistance Action

PDF 2.3mb

José Luis Castro – Building Pharmacovigilance Capacity in PAHO Countries

PDF 7.4mb

Kees de Joncheere WHO – Getting medicines to patients who need them

PDF 876kb

Susanne Keitel EDQM – Pharmaceutical Care Indicators Project

PDF 538kb

Susy Olave -Ibero-American Medicines Competent Authorities Network (EAMI)

PDF 641kb

Ulla Narhi – Medicines Policy 2020 Finland

PDF 175kb

For further information

If you have any queries about the Symposium, please email us at pharmaceuticalsymposium@health.gov.ie