19 Nov 2018 12:17

Make medicines safer by reporting side effects in children or during pregnancy or breast feeding. The FAMHP again participates in an international campaign to emphasize the importance of reporting side effects.

The campaign will run from the 19th to the 23rd of November and is part of an awareness week of 32 drug authorities from the EU, South America, the Middle East and Australia.

This time, the drug authorities are focussing on increasing reports of side effects in children, during pregnancy or while breast feeding.

In 2017, reports of side effects in children under eleven only made up 4% of all side effects.

Drugs on the Belgian market are of good quality, safe and effective. However, some patients experience side effects. The known side effects are listed in the package insert. Some side effects are only discovered after the drug is already on the market. It is important that risks are communicated by health care practitioners and understood by all patients, including parents, care givers, women who wish to become pregnant or women who are breast feeding.

Side effects can be headache or abdominal pain to flu-like symptoms or just not feeling well. All European drug authorities find that side effects are under-reported, however. More reports of suspected side effects ensure that a problem will be more rapidly detected and can be treated more quickly. Therefore, this campaign is urging everyone to report side effects.

This year, the United Nations Universal Children's Day falls within the awareness week. Both campaigns are focussed on increasing international cooperation and the welfare of children.

The campaign animations were made by the Uppsala Monitoring Centre an the World Health Organisation Collaborating Centre for International Drug Monitoring. The campaign is further supported by numerous organizations such as the EMA (European Medicines Agency), the European Commission and patient organizations such as EURORDIS.