Belgium will monitor quality of pharma products in developing countries
For this purpose, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Development Cooperation Alexander De Croo signed today, together with NGOs and other actors of the Belgian Official Development Aid (ODA), a declaration of commitment.
About a fourth of medicines are estimated to be of bad quality in countries where the Belgian Development Cooperation is active.
“This has disastrous consequences for the health of people who are often already vulnerable”, underlines Minister De Croo.
The access to quality pharmaceutical products for all is a priority of the Belgian Development Cooperation: 22% of Belgium’s ODA in the health sector are allocated to the purchase of medicines, which underlines the importance of this agreement.
This commitment makes also part of the implementation of the Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development.
“Using quality pharmaceutical products seems granted, but it is not. In the environment in which the Belgian Development Cooperation operates, it is estimated that more than a fourth of pharmaceutical products are of bad quality” confirms Alexander De Croo.
The Belgian initiative will protect the health of patients who benefit from programmes financed by the Belgian Development Cooperation.
In the longer term, it could reduce the continuing progression of resistance to antimicrobials.
It could also have an impact on the quality of pharmaceutical products circulating in the global pharmaceutical market.
With this commitment, Belgium becomes the first bilateral donor and the first Member State of the European Union to propose a response to the question of the quality of pharmaceutical products.
Belgium country’s good practices are looked at as being both innovative and inspiring by other EU Member States. ■