The EU pharmacovigilance system involves continuous safety monitoring by identifying and analysing any negative effects from the use of veterinary medicines that may occur in animals.
The system also monitors the following:
- Lack of efficacy or adverse events when a medicine is used off-label
- Adequacy of withdrawal periods
- Suspected spread of an infectious agent by a medicine
- Negative environmental effects
The system is applicable to all veterinary medicines in the EU / European Economic Area, including:
- Authorised veterinary medicines
- Registered homeopathic veterinary medicines
- Veterinary medicines exempt from authorisation under Article 5(6) of Regulation (EU) 2019/6
The CVMP Pharmacovigilance Working Party (PhVWP-V) provides advice to the Committee for Veterinary Medicinal Products (CVMP) and the Coordination group for mutual recognition and decentralised procedures for veterinary medicinal products (CMDv) on coordinating and overseeing veterinary pharmacovigilance activities in the EU / EEA.
In this section
International Cooperation on Harmonisation of Technical Requirements for Registration of Veterinary Medicinal Products (VICH)
Pharmacovigilance-related recommendations to product information of centrally authorised veterinary medicines
Annual summaries of safety-monitoring activities for veterinary medicines in a calendar year between 2003 and 2019
Changes introduced in 2022 by the Veterinary Medicinal Products Regulation
The Veterinary Medicinal Products Regulation (Regulation (EU) 2019/6) and Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2021/1281 contain specific legal provisions on veterinary pharmacovigilance.
This legal framework, which took effect in January 2022, aims to reduce administrative burden on industry and regulators while reinforcing the scientific focus of safety-monitoring activities.
The changes focus on the following areas:
- Continuous signal management throughout a medicine's lifecycle, based on adverse event reports in the 'Union Pharmacovigilance Database'
- Maintenance of a pharmacovigilance master file by the marketing authorisation holder describing their safety and efficacy monitoring system
- Pharmacovigilance inspections by regulators
Since 28 January 2022, marketing authorisation holders do not need to submit periodic safety update reports. They must carry out continuous signal management instead.
Interim measures for reporting pharmacovigilance alerts
Interim measures are in place for reporting pharmacovigilance alerts until the communication module of the Union pharmacovigilance database becomes fully functional.
This includes a list of contact points for marketing authorisation holders to report pharmacovigilance alerts, and to notify EMA and national competent authorities of other important pharmacovigilance-related matters, such as public announcements or regulatory measures in third countries.
Procedural note for interim measures regarding notification of pharmacovigilance alerts by marketing authorisation holders under Regulation (EU) 2019/6
Annex to interim measures regarding notification of pharmacovigilance alerts by marketing authorisation holders under Regulation (EU) 2019/6: contact points
Guidance on describing adverse events in the product information
Guidance is available on describing adverse events in the product information of veterinary medicines in the form of questions and answers in the document below.