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Pharmaceuticals and Medicines


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The vital role of health professionals in curbing drug-resistant infections


About one third of hospital patients are prescribed antibiotics and up to 50% of their use is unnecessary or inappropriate. ECDC data clearly reveals the causal association between the indiscriminate use of antibiotics and the spread of drug-resistant infections, also known as antimicrobial resistance (AMR). Whilst some EU countries have made significant strides in control of drug-resistant infections, overuse and the spread of AMR urgently need to be addressed in others. As drug-resistant (...)
06/04/2016

[EVENT REPORT] Pharma Pollution: An ignored cause of Antimicrobial Resistance


As the European Commission undertakes its evaluation of the expiring Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR), the joint EPHA - Health Care Without Harm Europe (HCWH) event of 10 December called for a much stronger consideration of the environmental dimension of AMR. A detailed event report is now available. The event was hosted by MEPs Martin Häusling (Greens, Germany) and Jasenko Selimovic (ALDE, SWE). Both MEPs underlined the need for urgent action, with MEP Selimovic concluding (...)
02/03/2016

Tackling AMR: Everybody’s got a role to play, but pharma must do more


Representatives of the pharmaceutical industry have responded to letters sent by EPHA and partners urging the industry to make their global supply chains transparent and adopt environmentally responsible management practices. While a number of initiatives are being supported by industry, the problem remains that these are non-binding and fragmented. As manufacturers and suppliers, and nodes in a multi-billion industry, pharma companies must do more and push for mandatory standards and (...)
28/12/2015

Environmental pollution: Neglected dimension of AMR


On 10 December 2015, EPHA and Health Care Without Harm Europe organised an event that discussed the link between AMR and environmental pollution, focusing on antibiotics manufacturing and animal husbandry. The event established that all stakeholders - in particular industry and regulators - must push for enforceable standards and regulation. A new EPHA report further develops this theme. Why is the environment neglected in AMR debates? Despite a number of scandals and growing evidence (...)
28/12/2015

[Events] Pharma Pollution: An Ignored Cause of Antimicrobial Resistance


Join EPHA, Health Care Without Harm, and MEP hosts Martin Hausling (Greens/EFA) and Jasenko Selimovic (ALDE) to discuss a long-neglected cause of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) - pollution of the natural environment arising from irresponsible antibiotic manufacturing and untransparent global supply chains, as well as from the overuse of antibiotics in veterinary medicine. Speakers will include representatives from civil society, the pharmaceutical industry, as well as EU and international (...)
17/11/2015

Pharmaceutical supply chains: what action is being taken?


EPHA, together with US consumer organisation SumOfUs and UK-based Ethical Consumer, has co-signed letters to some of the world’s leading pharmaceutical companies, asking for information on their sources of active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) and their production practices. The recent report, ’Bad Medicine’ published by SumOfUs, provides the context for the letters. It exposes the fact that a number of large pharmaceutical companies are sourcing antibiotic ingredients (...)
09/10/2015

Added therapeutic value of medicines: EPHA/Wemos event in the European Parliament


On 15 July 2015 EPHA and Wemos hosted an event in the Members’ Salon at the European Parliament to highlight the issue of added therapeutic value (ATV) in medicines. Several studies carried out at EU member state level indicate that the majority of medicines authorised for use have little-to-no ATV in comparison with existing treatments. This means that public money is being spent on new, costly medicines which have limited ATV, whilst also using up resources which might otherwise be (...)
28/08/2015

Evaluation of the Regulation on Tiered Pricing of Medicines


Supplying poor and developing countries with medicines at sustainable, reduced prices is one of the most important tools in the fight against major diseases, especially the “Big Three”, namely HIV, TB and malaria. After more than a decade since the Council Regulation (EC) 953/2003 came into force, to avoid trade diversion into the European Union of certain key medicines, stakeholders came together to discuss the overall impact of the Regulation at a workshop on 15 July 2015, (...)
03/08/2015

AMR’s multiple dimensions call for action on all fronts


The June Uppsala Health Summit (UHS), ‘A World Without Antibiotics’ expanded the discussion about antimicrobial resistance (AMR) at European and national level by examining this critical health threat from different angles. Among the key themes discussed were access to antibiotics and to improved diagnostics, the environmental dimension of AMR, collaborative research & innovation, and economic models allowing pharma companies to balance profits and investments for the public (...)
02/07/2015

New report exposes link between global pharmaceutical production and antimicrobial resistance


A new report released on 11 June 2015 by global consumer watchdog SumOfUs.org provides a new angle to the debate about the major health threat of antimicrobial resistance (AMR): the improper disposal of pharmaceutical waste by polluting factories in China, and their links with some of the world’s biggest pharmaceutical companies. The report raises the urgent need for antibiotic stewardship to avoid a looming public health disaster. According to the report, polluting factories in (...)
19/06/2015