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Friday 28.10.2016 | Name days: Ninona, Ņina, Antoņina, Oksana

Pharmacists: HM’s planned changes could bring chaos to the current system

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RULatvian Healthcare Ministry’s planned changes in State Agency of Medicines, specifically the division of certain functions between Healthcare Ministry and State Health Inspection, could bring about chaos to the sufficiently well-structured system, notes President of Latvian Pharmacists Association Kitija Blumfelde.

She explains that such changes could bring about chaos from the perspective of procedures, because it could require incredibly massive changes to other regulations, new human resources, development of new processes, their adoption and other related changes.

«The State Agency of Medicines has a specific function. It is only natural, considering the size and level of responsibility of the institution, that work of the agency is burdening and complicated,» – adds Blumfelde.

She notes that the agency plays a very important role in certifying pharmaceutical activities. A special committee has been formed for that purpose. Aside from members of the agency, there were also representatives from the Heath Inspection and LPA. Although this committee did not make decisions on its own, its recommendations were nonetheless considered by the agency.

This committee not only contributed to wider involvement of society, but also provided a certain degree of transparency to decision-making processes, emphasizes Blumfelde.

According to her, it is possible the current system is too bureaucratic. She adds that sometimes conflicts tend to surface, and it is not possible to resolve them within the framework of regulations, because some of them provide for different interpretations.

«There is no system that wouldn’t need improving every now and again. The pharmacy sector is very strictly regulated – it is supervised by all kinds of rules and requirements HM can potentially make more efficient. It is the ministry’s responsibility and it is within the ministry’s competence,» – notes Blumfelde.

She notes that an average pharmacist who works with clients on a regular basis does not contact SMA directly, because their main clients are managers of pharmacies, wholesale medicine sellers and CEOs or high-rank pharmaceutical production officers – mostly people who manage the work of pharmacies, but do not get involved in licensing matter and who may not even be pharmacists.

On 25 August, Latvian Cabinet of Ministers decided to postpone for a week making its decision on Healthcare Ministry’s proposed project, which provides for delegating certain functions of State Agency of Medicines to Health Inspection and Healthcare Ministry.


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