"Appropriate use of medicines is key to ensuring the best clinical outcomes for patients"
“Medication is the most common intervention in health care and plays a vital role in maintaining our health and wellbeing. Evidence suggests that inappropriate use of medicines results in sub-optimal medication outcomes and significant health damage for patients, and it decreases the efficiency and effectiveness of health care systems. Since a long time, the Committee of Experts CD-P-PH/PC has, through a number of activities, initiatives and legal instruments, actively contributed to the development and implementation of quality and safety standards to advance the appropriate and safe use of medications, promote patient-centred care and ensure that patients obtain the best possible outcome from their medicine” - Ms Eva Mendes, Chair of the CD-P-PH/PC
Work programme: setting quality and safety standards in pharmaceutical practices and pharmaceutical care
The Committee of Experts on quality and safety standards in pharmaceutical practices and pharmaceutical care (CD-P-PH/PC) is overseen by the European Committee on Pharmaceuticals and Pharmaceutical Care (CD-P-PH) (steering committee) and is entrusted with improving pharmaceutical care and pharmaceutical practices in community and hospital pharmacy settings through specific programmes and policies. Its primary responsibilities, according to its terms of reference, are as follows:
- To develop and carry out a programme of activities aiming at improving public healthcare in Europe through promoting knowledge, skills, attitudes and values in care and practices involving pharmaceuticals. In particular, these activities comprise the development and promotion of guidance documents and recommendations on safe and good use of medicines, such as:
- To assist in monitoring the adequate implementation of the results of the relevant activities at national level in States Parties to the Convention on the Elaboration of a European Pharmacopoeia and assist the CD-P-PH in the evaluation and follow-up of the programme of activities mentioned above;
- To promote the further development of pharmaceutical professionals, expertise, roles and co-operation of all partners within the medication and care chain, in particular pharmacists, medical doctors, nurses and caregivers;
- To maintain and develop links with national, European institutions and international organisations and professional bodies active in the fields of pharmaceutical practices and pharmaceutical care.
The CD-P-PH/PC consists of representatives from relevant public health authorities nominated by the governments of the States Parties to the Convention on the Elaboration of a European Pharmacopoeia. They include experts responsible for the preparation and follow-up of national policies in the field of pharmaceutical practices and pharmaceutical care.
Automated Dose Dispensing (ADD): Guidelines on best practice for the ADD process and care and safety of patients
The ADD guidelines have been developed by a working group of experts from industry, academia, pharmacy and government from across the region of the Council of Europe. These guidelines harmonise the standards and approaches to automated dose dispensing across Europe and are intended to be used by pharmacies and manufacturers involved in automated dose dispensing, as well as by national authorities in countries where this service is provided. They include standards regarding the ADD sites and operations, as well as patient care activities associated with the ADD process.
EDQM Pharmaceutical Care Quality Indicators Project
Pharmaceutical care is understood as a quality concept and working method for the responsible provision of medicine therapy for definite outcomes in the interest of patients’ quality of life (Hepler and Strand’s definition - 1990). The main goal of the EDQM Pharmaceutical Care Quality Indicators Project was to develop, test and validate 4 sets of quality indicators. For each indicator set, pilot studies were carried out in different countries in Europe under real-life conditions, and in different healthcare settings. A total of 19 collaborators from 12 countries in Europe were involved in the last phase of the project. In conclusion the project drew up and validated 4 basic sets of quality indicators covering 4 key areas of the pharmaceutical care process. These indicators can be used by health authorities and healthcare professionals to evaluate pharmaceutical care practices and policies, and to promote the efficient and safe use of medicines, leading to the best possible medication outcome for the patient.
- Pharmaceutical care
Resolution CM/Res(2020)3 on the implementation of pharmaceutical care for the benefit of patients and health services (Adopted by the Committee of Ministers on 11 March 2020 at the 1370th meeting of the Ministers' Deputies)
- Reconstitution of medicinal products for parenteral use
Resolution CM/Res(2016)2 on good reconstitution practices in health care establishments for medicinal products for parenteral use (Adopted by the Committee of Ministers on 1 June 2016 at the 1258th meeting of the Ministers’ Deputies)
- Pharmacy preparations
Resolution CM/Res(2016)1 on quality and safety assurance requirements for medicinal products prepared in pharmacies for the special needs of patients (Adopted by the Committee of Ministers on 1 June 2016 at the 1258th meeting of the Ministers’ Deputies)
The CD-P-PH/PC has given priority to the following activities and projects:
- Promotion of Resolution CM/Res(2020)3 on the implementation of pharmaceutical care for the benefit of patients and health services, which provides a framework for promoting and implementing the concept of pharmaceutical care in daily practice at national level;
- Promotion of the implementation and use of best practices for the reconstitution of medicines as defined in Resolution CM/ResAP(2016)2 on good reconstitution practices in health care establishments;
- Development of best practices for the medication review process that ensure patient safety, patient-centred care and best possible therapy outcomes;
- Provision of a forum for exchange of experience on national policies and strategies related to pharmaceutical practices and pharmaceutical care;
- Revision of Resolution ResAP(2007)2 on good practices for distributing medicines via mail order in cooperation with the Committees of Experts CD-P-PH/CMED and CD-P-PH/PHO;
- Preparation of a guidance document to support safe and correct use of herbal products by patients through appropriate advice and access to trustworthy and reliable information on use and risks associated with these products;
- Joint initiative with the Committee of Experts CD-P-PH/CMED focusing on borderline products (issues related to borderline products, regulatory approaches, experience-sharing platform);
- Joint initiative with the Committee of Experts CD-P-PH/CMED to develop best practices for traceability of medicines in hospital setting to minimise the occurrence of medication administration errors and ensure patient safety.