In a move to strengthen the Pharmacovigilance Programme of India (PvPI) in the North East (NE) region, the Indian Pharmacopoeia Commission (IPC) recently had a co-ordinators meet with all officials from its eight adverse drug reaction monitoring centres (AMCs). The meeting focused on discussing issues and challenges faced by the officials while reporting ADRs from states of Assam, Tripura, Meghalaya, Manipur and Sikkim.
Experts stressed that considering the importance of ADR in the success of the PvPI programme, pro active steps should be taken to streamline the activity by creating better awareness about the same among the people so that they will be encouraged to participate in the same. Dr V Kalaiselvan, senior scientific officer from the IPC informed that going in this line, the coordinators were directed to coordinate with the health departments in the rest of the NE states such as Nagaland, Mizoram, Arunachal Pradesh in reporting of ADRs.
In fact it is understood that Dr Y K Gupta, national scientific coordinator, emphasised that there is a need for strengthening PvPI for better reporting. There are a total three AMCs in Assam; two in Tripura; one in Meghalaya, Manipur and Sikkim each. The AMCs from NE, which had started reporting ADRs to NCC since 2011 have contributed approximately 3.5 per cent of the data to PvPI database till now. In fact, National Coordination Centre (NCC) provides all kind of logistic and technical support to the AMCs in NE to ensure medicines safety.
In fact the Commission, which is the NCC for the PvPI has already started streamlining their activities by organising continues medical education (CME) programme in collaboration with North Eastern Indira Gandhi Regional Institute of Health and Medical Sciences (NEIGRIHMS), which is the AMC, in Meghalaya. Interestingly this is the first time IPC is conducting CME, which is a training programme in the NE region.
It highlights the proactive measure IPC is taking towards generating awareness and interest about ADR among the healthcare professionals, which includes clinicians, pharmacists, nurses, officials from the health department, government of Meghalaya, co-ordinators of NE AMCs.
According to Dr Kalaiselvan, “These initiatives are mainly aimed at strengthening the PvPI programme so as to generate a strong data base that will help in addressing the healthcare issues relating to use of drugs. Effective and timely ADRs play a vital role in the success of PvPI programme, thus understanding the different pattern of reporting is also very essential, as the adverse reactions change as per the ethnicity of the region. Thus getting more AMCs under the PvPI and training them is very essential to understand and generate a strong data base which is unique to the region.”