Medical Writing Regulatory Writing Basics The approval process of medicines in Europe

Volume 23, Issue 2 - Regulatory Writing Basics

The approval process of medicines in Europe

Abstract

The European system of approval of new medicines comprises an European Union (EU)-wide authorisation procedure (the so called centralised procedure) alongside national procedures based on different EU Member States working together and recognising each other's evaluations (the so called decentralised and mutual recognition procedures). It is a system that has evolved over the past half century from one with wholly separate national systems to one where EU countries now harness their regulatory and scientific expertise to harmonise and improve the evaluation of medicines across Europe. Today, the purely national procedure is rarely used by applicants and only when they seek marketing authorisation in a single Member State. Although the different procedures may give an impression of complexity, they have simplified the authorisation process across Member States, reducing the times for new medicines to obtain marketing authorisation and improving patient access to new medicines.

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