EU MONITOR COVID-19 vaccines

 The EAHP EU Monitor is a regular round up of news relevant to hospital pharmacy in Europe.

EAHP Opinion on COVID-19 Vaccine Programmes and their Implementation

In December 2020, the European Association of Hospital Pharmacists (EAHP) issued an Opinion on COVID-19 Vaccine Programmes and their Implementation. The opinion touches on challenges posed by the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines and their administration. EAHP draws attention to transport and storage conditions, underlines the importance of good logistic processes and record-keeping and shares information that could help with combatting vaccine hesitancy. 

Since not all hospital pharmacies, especially those operating in small hospitals, are equipped with cooling facilities that can meet the conditions needed for some of the COVID-19 vaccines, EAHP called on national authorities to consider the local storage conditions in their national vaccination programmes to ensure a smooth roll-out of the vaccination activities across the healthcare sector. Linked to the administration and record-keeping the importance of tracking which person receives which vaccine and which dose of the vaccine was highlighted and the setting up and utilisation of a database was suggested to support the vaccination process and the pharmacovigilance activities of hospital pharmacists. 

Attention was drawn to the role of hospital pharmacists, who as part of the vaccination team, are committed to raise awareness and to share clear information with citizens. EAHP encourages national competent authorities to set up national vaccination awareness programmes for the COVID-19 vaccines which involve the expertise of healthcare professionals as trusted sources of information. 

Read the EAHP Opinion on COVID-19 Vaccine Programmes and their Implementation HERE

Information on COVID-19 vaccines and vaccinations 

Over the last three weeks, a lot has happened in relation to the availability of COVID-19 vaccines. The European Medicines Agency (EMA) issued conditional marketing authorisations for two products, Comirnaty and COVID-19 Vaccine Moderna, held two public meetings informing about the vaccine processes and received the application for the COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca. To ensure that hospital pharmacists receive all the latest information, EAHP has added a section on COVID-19 vaccines to its COVID-19 Resource Centre. 

The information in EAHP’s COVID-19 Resource Centre includes materials prepared by the EMA and for the European Vaccination Information Portal. Hospital pharmacists will be directed to key facts, information on the development, evaluation, approval and monitoring of COVID-19 vaccines and their studies for approval as well as all information that can be made publicly available for conditionally authorised products. 

Access EAHP’s COVID-19 Resource Centre HERE


Portugal takes over the Presidency of the Council of the EU

On 1st of January 2021, Portugal took over the Presidency of the Council of the EU from Germany. In the next six months emphasis will be put on bringing the EU through the COVID-19 pandemic and the promotion of a vision of the EU that is innovative, looks to the future and is based on common values of solidarity, convergence and cohesion.

In the health field, Portugal is planning to promote increased cooperation between Member States and to support the measures needed to augment the response capability of health services to threats to public health. Also, the acceleration of digitalisation will play a role since Portugal seeks to encourage new digital solutions and strategies for the green transition in the field of health. 

Learn more about the Portuguese Presidency HERE  

Share your good practices to tackle antimicrobial resistance

The AMR Stakeholder Network led by the European Public Health Alliance (EPHA) is looking for good practices for the successful management of antimicrobial resistance (AMR). Submit your initiative by 29th January 2021.

AMR can only be addressed through a multi-disciplinary approach, integrating human and animal health as well as environmental perspectives. EU and national decision-makers must therefore adopt a true ‘One Health’ approach in their actions to tackle AMR. Therefore, to be considered by the Selection Committee made up of members of the AMR Stakeholder Network, good practices submitted should fall into one of the five areas of the AMR Stakeholder Network 2019 Roadmap for Action on Antimicrobial Resistance. Also, they should tackle AMR in human, animal or environmental health. 

Learn more about the call for good practices to tackle AMR and the selection criteria HERE


EJHP: Investigating the challenges and opportunities for medicines management in an NHS field hospital during the COVID-19 pandemic

The original research published in the online edition of the European Journal of Hospital Pharmacy (EJHP) aims at investigating the opportunities and challenges presented for optimal medicines management (MM) during the development of the NHS Nightingale Hospital Birmingham (NHB) and developing a framework to support future NHS field hospitals of this model. The authors developed a framework to convert the large non-hospital setting into a functioning NHS field hospital with standardised MM processes adjusted appropriately to cope with operational constraints in the pandemic situation.  As a conclusion, the core MM team identified internal factors, resulting in a workforce, education & training and clinical pharmacy MM.

Read the article HERE

[COVID-19 Updates]


EAHP’s COVID-19 Resource Centre

To assist its member associations and individual hospital pharmacists in this critical time with the provision of the best possible care for patients, EAHP has decided to gather and make available information on COVID-19 relevant for the hospital pharmacy profession.

Access the Resource Centre HERE

Austrian Society of Pneumology (ÖGP) - Update SARS-CoV-2 treatment recommendations for intensive care medicine

This guideline guidelines supports the handling of COVID-19 patients in intensive care medicine with evidence-based recommendations to ensure maximum safety for patients and the medical care teams.

Read the guideline HERE

Belgium - Weekly overview of adverse reactions from COVID-19 vaccines

The FAMHP publishes weekly overview of adverse reactions reported following administration of COVID-19 vaccine in Belgium. Suspected side effects can be reported by healthcare professionals and patients via the new form for COVID-19 vaccines.

Access the form HERE 

Frontiers in Public Health - Multilevel Engagements of Pharmacists During the COVID-19 Pandemic: The Way Forward

The article analyses the role of hospital pharmacists during the ongoing COVID-19 crisis.

Read the article HERE



EAHP’s Self-assessment tool 

Have you already assessed the level of Statement Implementation within your hospital? The online self-assessment tool is a new initiative allowing hospital pharmacists to check the level of implementation of the European Statements of Hospital Pharmacy within their hospitals.

By assessing their hospital pharmacies, hospital pharmacists are not only able to understand the statement implementation level within their hospitals, but the tool also helps them to find out where they stand in comparison to others in their own country and abroad.

The tool also provides the means for hospital pharmacists to address the areas needing improvement with a tailor-made action plan and evidence-based resources. The tool allows pharmacies to show progress as it can be updated at any time. Remember that the official assessment needs to be done with the Chief Pharmacist!

Please find HERE a video explaining how you can use the tool to move towards implementation.





EDQM – Pharmeuropa PaedForm, Issue 3

The European Directorate for the Quality of Medicines & HealthCare (EDQM) released Issue 3 of Pharmeuropa PaedForm, in which the draft text for Phosphate 60 mg/mL Oral Solution is published for public consultation prior to its inclusion in the European Paediatric Formulary. This is the fourth monograph elaborated by the PaedForm Working Party.

Deadline – 31st March 2021

Find more information HERE