Drug Safety Matters

Drug Safety Matters

Drug Safety Matters brings you the best stories from the world of pharmacovigilance. Through in-depth interviews with our guests, we cover new research and trends, and explore the most pressing issues in medicines safety today. Produced by Uppsala Monitoring Centre, the WHO Collaborating Centre for International Drug Monitoring.

Episodes

June 27, 2024 30 mins

Ensuring trust in AI is vital to fully reap the benefits of the technology in pharmacovigilance. Yet, how do we do so while grappling with its ever-growing complexity?

This episode is part of the Uppsala Reports Long Reads series – the most topical stories from UMC’s pharmacovigilance news site, brought to you in audio format. Find the original article here.

After the read, we speak to one of the authors of the article, Michael Glase...

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Look-alike medicines, unclear communication and distractions during administration – medication errors may occur for many different reasons. They all have in common that they are unintended mistakes in the drug treatment process that may or may not lead to patient harm. In this episode Ghita Benabdallah and Loubna Alj from the national pharmacovigilance centre of Morocco, and Alem Zekarias from Uppsala Monitoring Centre discuss how...

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Medicines can affect our personality in positive ways, but they may also lead to destructive behaviours that can damage our relationships, finances, and overall quality of life. Michele Fusaroli from the University of Bologna explains how to diagnose and treat drug-induced impulse control disorders.

Tune in to find out:

  • Which medicines may cause impulsivity
  • What the ‘four knights’ of impulsivity are
  • How patient stories can help det...
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Serious and unexpected adverse drug reactions – the ‘black swans’ of pharmacovigilance – can place enormous strain on safety monitoring systems. Drawing examples from the COVID-19 pandemic, François Montastruc from Toulouse University Hospital explains how we can get better at dealing with the unpredictable.

Tune in to find out:

  • What Nassim Nicholas Taleb’s ‘black swan’ theory has to do with pharmacovigilance
  • What makes an adverse...
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The liver is the primary site for drug metabolism in the body, but it can be severely damaged by medicines or their toxic compounds. Rita Baião from the North Lisbon University Hospital Center reviews what pharmacovigilance professionals should know about drug-induced liver injury (DILI).

Tune in to find out:

  • Who is most at risk of developing DILI
  • How to diagnose the condition and control the damage
  • How to assess case rep...
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What did the drug safety community achieve in 2023 and how will the field develop in 2024? As the year comes to a close, we asked Angela Caro, president of the International Society of Pharmacovigilance (ISoP), to walk us through current and future trends in pharmacovigilance.

Tune in to find out:

  • Why patient engagement is a growing priority
  • What challenges exist in the Latin American region
  • Which topics will be in the spotlight ne...
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To mark #MedSafetyWeek, which took place from 6–12 November, we’re releasing a special two-part episode on pharmacovigilance communication campaigns. In this second part, we hear from three #MedSafetyWeek veterans – Anne-Cécile Vuillemin from the Ministry of Health in Luxembourg, Ban Al-Shimran from the Iraqi Ministry of Health, and Frieda Shigwedha from the Therapeutic Information and Pharmacovigilance Centre in Namibia – about wh...

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To mark #MedSafetyWeek, which takes place from 6–12 November, we’re releasing a special two-part episode on pharmacovigilance communication campaigns. In this first part, we speak to Mitul Jadeja from the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency in the UK about under-reporting and how initiatives like #MedSafetyWeek can help draw attention to medicines safety.

Tune in to find out:

  • Why under-reporting plagues all pharma...
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Herbal remedies have been used for thousands of years to treat what ails us. Yet why do we still know so little about their potential side effects compared to modern medicines?

This episode is part of the Uppsala Reports Long Reads series – the most topical stories from UMC’s pharmacovigilance news site, brought to you in audio format. Find the original article here.

After the read, we speak to author Daniele Sart...

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A patient's perspective can ensure safe medical care and lead to new insights that traditional research may overlook. But how do we best harness that perspective to improve patient outcomes?

This episode is part of the Uppsala Reports Long Reads series – the most topical stories from UMC’s pharmacovigilance news site, brought to you in audio format. Find the original article here.

After the read, we speak to ...

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Medicines safety monitoring is a continuous process that begins with pre-marketing clinical trials and continues with post-marketing studies to fill any gaps in knowledge. With Marianne Lunzer from AGES and Sanja Prpić from HALMED, we review the pros and cons of various study types and the importance of testing medicines on diverse populations.

Tune in to find out:

  • How pre- and post-approval safety studies are connected
  • ...
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Healthcare professionals are key players in medicines safety but they often lack the time or knowledge to report adverse drug reactions. To change that, we need to urgently rethink how we teach pharmacovigilance, argues Michael Reumerman from Amsterdam University Medical Centers.

Tune in to find out:

  • How real-life education can benefit healthcare students
  • Which educational intervention can be most impactful
  • How adverse dr...
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The vast amount of real-world data collected during routine clinical care is a treasure trove of safety information – but there are challenges to overcome before this rich source of evidence can be applied to pharmacovigilance. Patrick Ryan from Johnson & Johnson discusses how to harness real-world data for patient safety.

Tune in to find out:

  • How real-world data is collected and analysed
  • Which pharmacovigilance proc...
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Spontaneous reports of adverse drug reactions are a common source of evidence in pharmacovigilance, but as the science evolves, so do the types of data used to find and assess signals. Uppsala Monitoring Centre’s Daniele Sartori reviews how signal detection practices have changed over time.

Tune in to find out: 

  • Which features of case reports are most often used to assess causality 
  • Why pharmacovigilance experts should r...
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Most pharmacovigilance professionals will have heard of masking – a statistical issue where reports for one drug hide signals for other drugs. But the problem gained fresh attention when record amounts of reports began piling up for the COVID-19 vaccines. How should we be unmasking data in the COVID-19 vaccine era?

This episode is part of the Uppsala Reports Long Reads series – the most topical stories from UMC’s pharmacov...

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The COVID-19 pandemic forced pharmacovigilance experts to revisit their processes to deal with unprecedented volumes of data and catch unexpected safety issues. Elena Rocca from Oslo Metropolitan University reviews the challenges of a global healthcare emergency – and what it can teach us about the science of drug safety.

Tune in to find out:

  • How to handle uncertain evidence
  • Why clinical expertise matters in the age of b...
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The Identification of Medicinal Products (IDMP) standards promise to harmonise how pharmaceutical products and substances are described around the world. But how will that benefit patients and who will make sure the standards are properly implemented? Uppsala Monitoring Centre’s Malin Fladvad and Olle Lagerlund discuss the advantages and challenges of this global standardisation effort.

Tune in to find out:

  • What the IDMP standard...
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Public trust in vaccines hinges on their safety – but to make sure vaccines are safe, we must have systems in place to detect and manage any side effects. Dr Madhava Ram Balakrishnan, medical officer for vaccine safety at the World Health Organization, discusses how to build an effective vaccine surveillance system and how to respond to safety crises when they occur.

Tune in to find out:

  • How safety surveillance differs between va...
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Managing antimicrobial resistance (AMR) will require innovative solutions from many different disciplines. Could pharmacovigilance be one of them? Jean Marie Vianney Habarugira and Albert Figueras, who have been investigating how drug safety tools could help track AMR, think it’s time the two communities joined forces for good.

Tune in to find out:

  • How to code adverse drug reactions for optimal AMR surveillance
  • How to us...
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With the right care, people infected with HIV can lead long and healthy lives. But as with any life-long medical treatment, it is important to acknowledge and manage any side effects. Henry Zakumumpa from Makerere University School of Public Health tells us about the potential harms of new HIV therapies and the challenges faced by pharmacovigilance specialists in Uganda.

Tune in to find out:

  • How dolutegravir-based HIV t...
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