Eritrea: Track Record in Drug Safety Monitoring
• According to the reports of the Uppsala Monitoring Center (Sweden), the WHO collaborating center for international drug monitoring, Eritrea tops all African countries in completeness and number of the submitted drug safety reports to the global database. (see figure 1 & 2)
• As a result, the Eritrean Pharmacovigilance program detected 11 new drug safety issues which were previously unknown to global scientific community and manufacturers.
• These identified safety issues have been communicated internationally in peer-reviewed international journals and some have received global attention entailing policy changes in the Eritrean Healthcare system.
• WHO-IGAD joint benchmarking assessment on the Eritrean medicines regulation system was also conducted in March 2017. The Eritrean Pharmacovigilance program achieved the desired maturity level set by the WHO. (see figure 3)
• The assessors reported that rapid benchmarking of Eritrea attests that Pharmacovigilance function is performed at maturity LEVEL THREE indicating a local strength that can provide technical support in regional harmonization initiatives.
• Eritrea, along with two other countries, (the Netherlands and Peru), who have broken new ground in Pharmacovigilance, are invited to share their success stories in the upcoming 40th Anniversary of the Uppsala Monitoring Centre that will take place in May 2018.
• It is to be recalled that, in April 2016 the Ministry of Health had offered a one-week advanced Pharmacovigilance Course in which 17 countries from Africa and beyond participated.