WHO delays decision on nomenclature


The WHO Secretariat were asked to think again about their nomenclature choice at the Executive Board meeting on 23 January 2021. Most IMDRF member countries present put forward a strong case for using the GMDN, because it is the existing nomenclature used by many countries and some warned of confusion and additional costs that would result from divergence from using GMDN. The WHO has recently dropped its previous plan to develop a completely new nomenclature in preference to adopting the EMDN when available. Some other countries, mainly European, propose the yet unpublished EMDN. The reasons the WHO Secretariat preferred the EMDN was not made clear, according to some countries at the meeting.

Dr Mariângela Simão, Assistant Director General, Access to Medicines and Health Products at the WHO, the department responsible for the WHO report EB148/13, concluded there were “no quick fixes for a very complex issue” & “we will organise a member state consultation on this topic very soon”.

The full session 12 was recorded and can be viewed on the WHO website at https://www.who.int/about/governance/executive-board/executive-board-148th-session