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Call for abstracts: Pharmaceutical Policy Analysis, Utrecht, The Netherlands 6-7 January 2011

Utrecht WHO Winter Meeting, January 2011
Invitation and call for abstracts
The WHO Collaborating Centre for Pharmacoepidemiology and Pharmaceutical Policy Analysis (head: Prof. Dr. Bert Leufkens) in collaboration with Dr. Richard Laing (Department of Essential Medicines and Pharmaceutical Policies, WHO) will organise again a [northern hemisphere] Winter Meeting for researchers in the field of pharmaceutical policy analysis.


The central theme of the first meeting day is “Policy challenges in benefit-risk assessment”. Worldwide, safety decisions are taken based on established benefits and risks of medicines. However, policy implications of decisions, e.g. in pharmacovigilance, may vary across different countries or regions of the world as a result of differences in local needs, local absence of alternatives and many other reasons. This is just one of the hot topics in pharmaceutical regulation in general and pharmacovigilance in particular, where policy decisions may vary according to different circumstances. Invited speakers will present studies, experiences and views on these and other policy challenges that are faced by decision-makers, industry, health care professionals and academia. Lessons learned from case examples will be discussed by an expert panel.

On the second day, submitted abstracts will be presented and discussed in the morning (oral presentations) and during lunch (poster presentations). Abstracts are not limited to the central theme of the first day; all research in the field of pharmaceutical policy analysis is eligible for submission. The focus of the sessions will be on methods used or proposed.

For more information go to: and click on News / Upcoming events.

For questions or to submit an abstract, please contact the organisers directly:  Niesanne ten Cate (.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)) and Aukje Mantel (.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)).


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Far too large a section of the treatment of disease is to-day controlled by the big manufacturing pharmacists, who have enslaved us in a plausible pseudo-science...
The blind faith which some men have in medicines illustrates too often the greatest of all human capacities - the capacity for self deception...
Some one will say, Is this all your science has to tell us? Is this the outcome of decades of good clinical work, of patient study of the disease, of anxious trial in such good faith of so many drugs? Give us back the childlike trust of the fathers in antimony and in the lancet rather than this cold nihilism. Not at all! Let us accept the truth, however unpleasant it may be, and with the death rate staring us in the face, let us not be deceived with vain fancies...
we need a stern, iconoclastic spirit which leads, not to nihilism, but to an active skepticism - not the passive skepticism, born of despair, but the active skepticism born of a knowledge that recognizes its limitations and knows full well that only in this attitude of mind can true progress be made.
- William Osler 1909