Governments and pharmacy organisations should develop and introduce national medicines information strategies to improve the safe and effective use of medicines across the world, according to a report by global pharmacist body the International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP).
Pharmacists also have a role to play in using reliable medicines information sources which would boost adherence and the rational use of medicines, says the federation that incorporates the national pharmacist associations of its 139 member countries as well as academic institutions.
Training on medicines information and how to use it should also be written into health professions’ education and health professionals should also be taught the skills they need to counsel patients about their medication, suggests the report entitled ‘Medicines Information, Strategic Development’, published on 31 January 2017.
“Pharmacists’ expertise is highly relevant to guiding the development and implementation of medicines information strategies within national medicines and health policies,” comments report editor Katri HÃ¤meen-Anttila, a pharmacist and head of research and development at the Finnish Medicines Agency.
The report reveals what best practice medicines information looks like and throws the spotlight on the United States, UK and Finland, where strategies already exist.
It also suggests ways that low-income countries can develop medicines information within their own medicines management policies.