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An overview of the EAHP 2007 Congress


Carole Mongin-Bulewski
Managing Editor
Hospital Pharmacy Europe

The 12th EAHP Annual Congress will be held in Bordeaux, France, in March 2007. This article provides an overview of the forthcoming conference. The congress is being organised by the European Association of Hospital Pharmacists in the President Jacqueline Surugue’s own country. The main theme of the 12th EAHP Annual Congress will be a topic that every hospital pharmacist should feel concerned about, new therapies in the 21st century.

The keynote presentation by William E Evans (St Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Memphis, USA) during the opening ceremony will focus on how genome technology is affecting therapy in hospital pharmacy practice. Over the following few days there will also be be a keynote presentation by Nirmala Bhogal (FRAME, Nottingham, UK) on how new pharmaceuticals are being tested in humans after the tragic incident in London in March 2006, and a keynote presentation by Merrill Goozner (Center for Science in the Public Interest, Washington, DC, USA) on the future of free research and drug development.

New therapies in the 21st century
There has always been a close connection between pharmacy skills and the range of therapies available for the patient, from the earliest pharmacopoeias, which described “active ingredients” in combination with recommendations on how to handle them and ways to formulate them into medicines.

The challenge for today’s pharmacist is the introduction of complex therapies, including drugs with many targets and, in some cases, drugs designed for individual metabolism of the single patient. New skills are demanded of hospital pharmacists, while at the same time documentation and quality assurance according to European rules for good manufacturing practice are mandatory tools for them.

Programme of the congress
Seminars and industry-sponsored satellite symposia will �cover other relevant topics. Topics covered in the first day of the conference will range from the role of the pharmacist in biopharmaceuticals to trends in European hospital pharmacy in the new century, as well as the GMP 200X for hospital pharmacies (is it of benefit for the patient?) and the possible future shortage in drugs available in the EU. Other topics will include haemato-oncology as a cutting-edge diagnosis translated into tailormade therapy, the re-engineering of hospital pharmacy in Europe (changing from cost to care centres), the future role of the hospital pharmacist in purchasing drugs and how hospital accreditation will affect hospital pharmacies in Europe.

On the second day, there will be seminars and presentations on the effect of genetic information on hospital pharmacy practice, incompatibility reactions in drug therapy and how to prevent medication errors, and the organisation of a clinical trial unit. In addition, the national president’s seminar will look into patient safety in the daily life of European hospitals.

Symposium on biosimilars
An Amgen-sponsored satellite symposium on the opportunities and challenges raised by biosimilars will be introduced by Professor Daan Crommelin (Utrecht Institute for Pharmaceutical Science, Utrecht University, Netherlands), followed by a presentation on the principles of biologicals manufacturing and the consequences for product identity and properties of biosimilars by Professor Florian Wurm (Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne, Switzerland). An update on EMEA guidelines on biosimilars will be given by Jerome Rossert (Georges Pompidou European Hospital, Paris, France). The symposium will close with a presentation on biosimilars and drug substitution by Matthias Bohn (University Hospital of Gottingen, Germany).

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