MeTA - Promotion of medicines

Medicines' promotion to agencies, professionals and users should adhere to strict ethical standards. While it may seem straight forward, promotion is a complex area because there can be a fine line between information provision and influence. The resources in this key list are concerned with ensuring ethical standards are followed in promoting and prescribing medicines.

We will add to this key list over time and would welcome suggestions or additions. Please send these to: sourceassistant@hi-uk.org

Selected resources

Books, reports, etc

Ethical issues concerning the relationships between medical practitioners and the pharmaceutical industry

KOMESAROFF, Paul A.
KERRIDGE,Ian H.
February 2002

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This article considers the conflict of interests that can overlap between medical practitioners and the pharmaceutical industry and the influence that associations between the two groups has on doctors' clinical decision making. It recommends that basic principles underlying the conduct of doctors with respect to pharmaceutical companies should be openness and transparency and that clear procedures should be developed to deal with specific issues such as travel subsidies, receipt of gifts, sponsorship of conferences and continuing education activities, and dualities of interest arising in clinical research settings

Guide to good prescribing : a practical manual

DE VRIES, T. P. G. M.
et al
1994

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This book provides step by step guidance to the process of rational prescribing, together with many illustrative examples. It teaches skills that are necessary throughout a clinical career. It is primarily intended for undergraduate medical students who are about to enter the clinical phase of their studies but postgraduate students and practicing doctors may also find it a source of new ideas

Improving management of childhood malaria in Nigeria and Uganda by improving practices of patent medicine vendors

GREER, George
et al
2004

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"A number of studies from Sub-Saharan African (SSA) have shown that between 15 and 82 per cent of the population choose to first consult private drug shops and informal providers for advice about and assistance with treatment of childhood illnesses. It has also been found for private shops that a large percentage of the drugs provided or dosages given, or both, are inappropriate, indicating the need for innovative and effective approaches to achieve rational prescribing practices. The Ministries of Health in Nigeria and Uganda, in collaboration with partners, designed approaches to utilize private providers for delivery of basic child survival strategies and products to those populations less served by the public sector. These two distinct exploratory models built on lessons from similar efforts in SSA and elsewhere to develop approaches suited to the present situations in Nigeria and Uganda. This report describes the design, implementation, and results of those interventions"

Measuring transparency to improve good governance in the public pharmaceutical sector : Jordan

NUSEIRAT, Adi
2009

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"This report presents the findings of the first phase of the [World Health Organization's] national Good Governance for Medicines programme in Jordan. The assessment aims to obtain a picture of the level of transparency and potential vulnerability to corruption in the public pharmaceutical sector using WHO’s assessment instrument. In Jordan, the assessment looked at six functions: medicines registration, inspection of pharmaceutical establishments, promotion, selection, procurement and distribution"

Measuring transparency to improve good governance in the public pharmaceutical sector : Lebanon

HAMRA, Rasha
RAIDY, Collette
NAOUS, Maha
2009

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"This report presents the findings of the first phase of the [World Health Organization's] national Good Governance for Medicines programme in Lebanon. The assessment aims to obtain a picture of the level of transparency and potential vulnerability to corruption in the public pharmaceutical sector using WHO’s assessment instrument. In Lebanon, the assessment looked at six functions: medicines registration, inspection of pharmaceutical establishments, promotion, selection, procurement and distribution"

Measuring transparency to improve good governance in the public pharmaceutical sector : Syrian Arab Republic

AL MARDINI, Amer
AL HAKEEM, Souheila
2009

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"This report presents the findings of the first phase of the [World Health Organization's] national Good Governance for Medicines programme in the Syrian Arab Republic. The assessment aims to obtain a picture of the level of transparency and potential vulnerability to corruption in the public pharmaceutical sector using WHO’s assessment instrument. In the Syrian Arab Republic, the assessment looked at eight functions: medicines registration, licensing of pharmaceutical establishments, inspection of pharmaceutical establishments, promotion, selection, clinical trials, procurement and distribution"

Medicines use in primary care in developing and transitional countries : fact book summarizing results from studies reported between 1990 and 2006

WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION (WHO)
May 2009

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Irrational use of medicines is one of the most serious global public health problems we face today. Improving use requires regular monitoring and application of effective interventions, both of which are often not done, particularly in many lower income countries. To address this issue, WHO created a database of medicines use in in primary care settings in developing and transitional countries. Quantitative information has been extracted from 679 studies conducted in 97 countries and on 386 interventions (from 313 studies). The medicines use database has allowed the first systematic quantitative review of studies measuring medicines use in developing and transitional countries and the results are now presented

Serials

Journal articles

When staff is underpaid : dealing with the individual coping strategies of health personnel

LERBERGHE, Wim Van
et al
2002

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'Health sector workers respond to inadequate salaries and working conditions by developing various individual ‘‘coping strategies’’ - some, but not all, of which are of a predatory nature. The paper reviews what is known about these practices and their potential consequences (competition for time, brain drain and conflicts of interest)....[It] argues that...Governments will need to recognize the dimension of the phenomenon and systematically assess the consequences of policy initiatives on the situation and behaviour of the individuals that make up their workforce'