International Pharmaceutical Students' Federation

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Meeting: 
144th session of the Executive Board<br>24 January - 1 February 2019
Agenda Item: 
5.7.1 Access to medicines and vaccines
Statement: 

The International Pharmaceutical Students’ Federation (IPSF), the voice of over 350,000 pharmacy students and recent graduates in 90 countries worldwide.

Universal health coverage is reliant on access to safe, quality and effective medicines and vaccines for all. If access to essential medicines is disrupted, the objectives of WHO in line with SDG 3 may not be achieved. The rising cost of new medicines, lack of transparency in supply chains and insufficient market regulation of substandard and falsified medical products all contribute to global access concerns.

Pharmacists are key stakeholders in providing access to medicines, vaccines and health products which is essential in achieving the highest attainable standard of health for all. Pharmacists protect patients from the consequences of medication shortages by utilising medication substitutions, cost-effective procurement, and equitable medication allocation. In this way, pharmacists mitigate the potential harm to patients caused by gaps in the supply chain.

IPSF supports the Good Governance of Medicines (GGM) so as to promote transparency through the supply chain and the strengthening of regulatory capacity, monitoring systems and workforce capacity. Additionally, IPSF believes in WHO’s approach to medication shortages, supports the creation of a road map report for access to medicines, vaccines and other health products, 2019–2023 outlining best practices to be adopted worldwide.

IPSF calls on all countries and member states to utilise pharmacists as medication experts in rationalising the use of medications, the creation of evidence-based risk mitigation plans for shortages and the implementation of systems at national levels for gathering and sharing information about demand for, and supply of, medicines within their jurisdiction. Through working collaboratively across the supply chain we can ensure the right medicines, reach the right patients at the right time.