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Coronavirus: hydroxychloroquine, chloroquine and Kaletra (lopinavir & ritonavir) are subject to controlled distribution in Belgium to enhance monitoring of treatments

Hydroxychloroquine, chloroquine and Kaletra (lopinavir & ritonavir) are used to treat patients with COVID-19. The FAMHP has quarantined available stocks of these medicines to control their distribution, improve monitoring of their use and limit the risks to patients. Do not take any of these medicines without medical supervision.

Operation PANGEA XIII: Belgian customs and the FAMHP seize 203 packages containing over 23 000 illicit or counterfeit products

The FAMHP, in collaboration with Belgian customs, took part in the international Operation PANGEA XIII from 3 to 10 March 2020. This operation, coordinated by INTERPOL, specifically targets the interception of illicit and counterfeit medicinal products and devices. In Belgium, inspections were performed at the Zaventem and Bierset control points.

Start of survey about the use of benzodiazepines and related substances for sleep disorders in Belgium

As announced, the Federal Agency for Medicines and Health Products (FAMHP) is holding an online survey to collect information about the use of benzodiazepines and related substances for sleep disorders in the Belgian population. The survey starts today and will run for one month.

PRAC February 2020 : recommendations for cyproterone containing medicinal products.

During its meeting of 10 – 13 February 2020, the Pharmacovigilance Risk Assessment Committee (PRAC) of the European Medicines Agency (EMA) recommends restrictions in use of cyproterone due to meningioma risk.

www.notifieruneffetindesirable.be - www.eenbijwerkingmelden.be: more practical and user friendly online forms

The FAMHP has created an online form for healthcare professionals to notify any adverse effects of medicinal products for human use. This new format incorporates the patient notification form for that has been online since March 2019. From now on, anybody can notify adverse effects of medicinal products using simplified online forms available at a single address: www.notifieruneffetindesirable.be or www.eenbijwerkingmelden.be.

Flash VIG-news: abuse of opioid analgesics – for rational use of opioids

L’Amérique du Nord connait depuis plusieurs années une « épidémie » d’abus, de surdosages et de décès liés aux opioïdes. Dans une moindre mesure, ces dernières années l’utilisation d’opioïdes en Europe a fortement augmenté, entre autres pour faire face au syndrome de la douleur chronique. Bien que s’inscrivant dans le cadre de l’amélioration de la prise en charge de la douleur, l’utilisation accrue d’opioïdes est remise en question au vu des risques associés à leur abus. L’accent est donc mis sur la prévention de la dépendance et des abus, et sur l’importance de l’usage rationnel des opioïdes.

PRAC November 2019: recommendations for the medicinal products Lemtrada and Xeljanz

During the meeting of 28 - 31 October 2019, the Pharmacovigilance Risk Assessment Committee (PRAC) of the European Medicines Agency (EMA) implemented measures to minimise risk of serious side effects with Lemtrada. Furthermore, the PRAC recommended Xeljanz to be used with caution for all patients at high risk of blood clots.

1 in 20 university students uses stimulant medicines in order to study better

The FAMHP asked more than 12,000 francophone university students about the use of stimulant drugs. 5% of them said to use stimulant medicines for non-medical use, in order to study better.

The fight against anti-microbial resistance continues: the Belgian BAPCOC 2019 antibiotics guide is available on the CBIP website

As recommended by the Belgian Health Care Knowledge Centre (KCE), a new step in the fight against anti-microbial resistance has been taken: the 2019 edition of the Belgian Antibiotic Policy Coordination Committee (BAPCOC)’s antibiotics guide is available online on the Belgian Pharmacotherapy Information Centre (CBIP) website.

Campaign to report side effects: in 2019, focus on interactions during simultaneous use of various medicines

The fourth #MedSafetyWeek runs from November 25 to 29, 2019. Competent authorities from all over the worlds are participating in a social media campaign to draw attention to the importance of reporting side effects of medicines. This year, the campaign focuses on possible interactions when various medicines are used at the same time.

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