Pharmacovigilance, or the monitoring of the effects of medicines, plays a key role in the regulation of medicines. This includes medical devices, as new regulations are introduced to protect patients and ensure the safe and effective use of medicines. With new technologies and treatments being developed all the time, it is crucial that we have systems in place to monitor their safety and efficacy. Here's a look at why pharmacovigilance is so important, and how it will continue to play a key role in medicine regulation in the years to come.
What is Pharmacovigilance?
Pharmacovigilance is the science and activities associated with the detection, assessment, understanding and prevention of adverse effects or any other medicine-related problem. In other words, it's the study of how medicines affect people's health.<>Pharmacovigilance plays a key role in medicine regulation because it helps to ensure that medicines are safe and effective for patients to use. By constantly monitoring the effects of medicines, we can quickly identify any problems that may arise and take steps to mitigate them. This helps to protect patients and ensure that they are receiving the best possible care.
How Does Pharmacovigilance Work?
There are three main aspects to pharmacovigilance:
- Surveillance: This involves active monitoring of adverse effects of medicines through databases, clinical trials and other sources. This helps us to identify previously unknown adverse effects and track changes in known adverse effects over time.
- Research: This involves studying how different factors like age, gender, ethnicity and comorbidities affect individual responses to medicines. This helps us to understand why some people are more susceptible to certain adverse effects than others.
- Risk management: This involves taking steps to minimise the risks associated with medicines through measures like warnings on labels, educational campaigns and changes to prescribing guidelines.
Why is Pharmacovigilance Important?
Pharmacovigilance is important because it helps us to monitor the safety and effectiveness of medicines. By constantly collecting data on adverse effects and conducting research into individual responses to medicines, we can make sure that patients are receiving the best possible care. In recent years, pharmacovigilance has played a key role in identifying previously unknown adverse effects of popular drugs like Vioxx and Paxil. It has also helped to mitigate known risks through measures like warnings on labels and changes to prescribing guidelines.