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Washington, DC, 20 January, 2018 (PAHO/WHO)- Nearly 70 professionals from National Regulatory Authorities for Medicines of 18 countries of the Americas completed the virtual course on "Sanitary Regulation of Biological and Biotechnological Products - Edition 2018" of the Virtual Campus of Public Health of the Pan American Health Organization (VCPH/PAHO).

The purpose of this virtual course is to develop competences for the evaluation of biological and biotechnological products by the National Regulatory Authorities (NRAs). "This initiative seeks to support the strengthening of regulatory functions for medicines in the Americas," said Maria Luz Pombo, coordinator of the course. Also, to strengthen the collaboration between NRAs of the Region, through the exchange of information and experiences between countries," she added.

The course program consisted of a self-learning phase, where participants completed 10 modules aimed at covering the different aspects of the sanitary regulation of medicines of biological origin. At the end of this instance, students presented a final integrative project to support the development of an institutional development plan (IDP) of the NRA to which they belong.

During 2019 will take place the second stage of this initiative, which consists of a face-to-face phase under an internship program in a Regional Reference Authorities for medicines. The objective of this phase is to promote the technical and scientific exchange of selected students in support of the priorities of the IDP prepared.

The course was prepared with the collaboration of the following Regional Reference National Regulatory Authorities: ANMAT (Argentina), ANVISA (Brazil), Health Canada (Ministry of Health of Canada), INVIMA (Colombia), CECMED (Cuba), together with other collaborators: the National Commissioner of Bioethics in Mexico, and other members of the Board of Directors of the Pan American Network for Harmonization of Pharmaceutical Regulation (RedPARF), the Latin American Association of Pharmaceutical Industries (ALIFAR), and the Latin American Federation of the Pharmaceutical Industry (FIFARMA).