2012 ends, 2013 begins, and the green journey continues…

SWEDISH SUMMARY: Om jag tittar tillbaka på 2012 så har året vad gäller läkemedel och miljö dominerats av uppdragen inom den Nationella Läkemedelsstrategin. Under 2013 kommer framför allt de två uppdragen inom strategin som kallas 7.1 respektive 7.2 att dominera agendan.

The snow is melting away...

The snow is melting away...

It is always fun looking back on the year that has passed and also trying to look ahead and see what the new year will bring. Similar to previous years (2008, 2009, 2010, 2011) I’ll give it a try!

First looking back (as yesterday in the ski tracks when Maria was catching up on me…).

Looking backwards...

Looking backwards...

When it comes to pharmaceuticals and the environment, 2012 has been dominated by the environmental tasks within the National Pharmaceutical Strategy:

Reduce effects on the environment by pharmaceuticals, locally and globally:
7.1. Investigate if the environmental aspects should be considered when decisions on subsidy for a pharmaceutical are decided (Lead: Ministry of Health – part of Sofia Wallström’s Pharmaceutical and Pharmacy Review): Review of possibilities to – within the context of the national reimbursement system – increasingly take environmental considerations.
7.2. Encourage voluntary control of emissions from pharmaceutical factories (Lead: LIF): Introduction of a voluntary environmental labeling/assessment of pharmaceutical products.
7.3. Investigate what further measures can be taken at national level to reduce wastage of medicines or in other ways limit the environmental impact of use of pharmaceuticals (Lead: Medical Products Agency): Investigation of the causes of wastage and propose measures to reduce wastage of medicines. Implementation of joint information efforts to encourage patients to return leftover medicines.
7.4. Promote the possibilities for environment considerations during production and use of medicines (Lead: Cabinet Office): The Government on June 9, 2011 took the decision (M 2010:04) to give the All Party Committee on Environmental Objectives (Miljömålsberedningen) the additional task of developing a strategy for Sweden’s work in the EU as well as internationally for a non-toxic environment. The strategy should also encompass the impact of pharmaceuticals on the environment.

If you would like to read some of my blog posts from 2012 on these issues, try these ones for instance:
Green economic incentives in the pharmaceutical industry (from Dec 05), NLS 7.2 and Sustainability Assessments of Pharmaceuticals (from Nov 22), and News re Pharma and the All Party Committee on Env Objectives (from Jan 24).

And of course, related to task 7.3 of the National Pharmaceutical Strategy, I have to mention in my 2012 chronicle, the Unused Medicines Campaign from March and April.

Another topic (however connected to the National Pharmaceutical Strategy’s tasks 7.1 and 7.2) which has been heavily discussed during 2012 is environmental and social criteria in public procurement of pharmaceuticals. Read my blog post from September 26 for more details.

Looking ahead into 2013...

Looking ahead into 2013...

And looking ahead into 2013 – what will be on the agenda?

Well of course, the tasks 7.1 and 7.2 of the National Pharmaceutical Strategy will be very important and will strongly dominate the agenda. I really cross my fingers, hoping that the Sofia Wallström review will open up for environmental considerations within the pricing and reimbursement system in their report (due April 1, 2013)! I am also convinced that we will se further developments when it comes to sustainability criteria in public procurement and tenders. We will see interesting initiatives on the social aspects of sustainable development already early in 2013 as part of Pauline Göthberg’s work. For more details on Pauline Göthberg and her work, please read the blog post from November 30, on Pfizer AB’s seminar regarding sustainability and pharmaceuticals.

And not to forget, the research projects MistraPharma and Pharmas continues, and there will of course be more discussions regarding active pharmaceutical ingridients and the Water Framework Directive (and of course other regulatory developments such as MPA’s GMP-proposal and eco-pharmacovigilance).

I guess it looks like 2013 also will be an intensive and interesting year! Happy New Year to everyone!!!

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