The charity – Safe Medicines for Animals through regulatory training (SMArt, www.smart-org.uk) – was launched on 11 March at a reception at the House of Lords attended by Ministers, senior government officials, and leaders in the pharmaceutical industry and representatives from major international charitable bodies.
SMArt will provide training to low and middle income countries to improve how they regulate veterinary medicines focussing on ensuring medicines are used safely, effectively and responsibly.
Effective regulation of veterinary medicines has substantial benefits for the health of animals and people, the quality of the environment and economic growth particularly in developing countries. Improving global regulation of medicines is vital to tackle international health issues such as antimicrobial resistance.
SMArt will connect local regulators with world leading individual experts and organisations to create tailored training programmes to build the capacity of low and middle income countries to regulate veterinary medicines effectively.
Training will cover all aspects of modern veterinary medicines regulation, including policy development, provision of expert scientific advice and the delivery of core regulatory services such as the authorisation of safe and effective medicines and effective post-authorisation surveillance through pharmacovigilance and inspections. SMArt will also provide a bespoke and confidential benchmarking tool to allow regulatory authorities to assess their systems and processes against a set of indicators covering management systems, assessment of marketing authorisation applications, pharmacovigilance activities and inspection services.
Defra and the UK’s regulator of veterinary medicines – the Veterinary Medicines Directorate – supports SMArt as a new global partner in protecting animal and public health from the threat of antimicrobial resistance.