|Indicators for monitoring national drug policies (WHO/EDM, 1999, 250 p.)|
Many countries today are formulating and implementing comprehensive national drug policies. Such policies aim to make available effective, safe and low-cost drugs to meet the health care needs of the entire population, and to ensure that drugs are prescribed and used rationally.
Until 1994 no practical tools existed to objectively monitor progress in national drug policies or to adjust strategies on the basis of systematic assessment. That gap was filled when WHO published Indicators for Monitoring National Drug Policies. For the first time the simple and reliable indicators contained in the manual enabled countries and international agencies to assess capacity to implement a national drug policy and to monitor its implementation. In the last five years considerable experience has been gained in use of the indicators, notably in 1996. when they were systematically applied in 12 countries. Valuable feedback from around the world has been incorporated in this second edition.
The indicators are primarily intended for senior managers to assess progress towards defined targets. National policy-makers concerned with overall improvement of health conditions will find a practical tool to monitor progress in drug policy. Additionally, ministries of health (and other ministries) can select and adapt certain indicators for regular reporting on the pharmaceutical situation of their country. International agencies will find the manual useful when developing new projects in the pharmaceutical field and when assessing current projects. The standardized information provided can also help reduce duplication of effort when multiple agencies are working in one country.
Department of Essential Drugs and Medicines Policy, World
1211 Geneva 27, Switzerland