200 Years of Building Medical Trust – TEDMED Blog


The theme of TEDMED 2020 is Make way for miracles, We look forward to convening our communities to embrace the miracles, amazing achievements, incredible possibilities and extraordinary future potential of our time.Therefore, when the United States Pharmacopeia (USP) decided to celebrate its 200th anniversary With TEDMED. After all, today’s miracles are built on a solid foundation of scientific discovery. Moreover, humans are particularly eager for innovations that can help people around the world live longer and healthier. USP is expected to participate in TEDMED in March. We discussed the history of the organization, current work, and its future in medicine, supplements, and food with CEO Dr. Ronald T. Piervincenzi.

information: We are very happy that you and USP have joined the TEDMED community, especially on the occasion of such a landmark milestone-the 200th anniversary of USP.

Ronald T. Pilvincenzi: Thank you. I am very happy to introduce USP to the TEDMED audience, and look forward to meeting participants in Boston in March.

TM value: What made you choose TEDMED to celebrate this milestone anniversary?

RP: Today, we are observing an unprecedented transformation in the field of healthcare. The 200-year legacy of USP is based on trust and confidence in the healthcare system, as well as anticipating and responding to emerging health challenges. Our founders united in 1820 to protect patients from inferior medical products. Today’s background is different in scale, geography, method, and many other factors. But the value of our work is the same. We are exploring how to build trust in future medical breakthroughs. There is a lot we can learn and participate in in the TEDMED community, because we can imagine what the future will be like.

TM value: This is what TEDMED is all about! Let’s explore in depth. What is the Pharmacopoeia and what does the USP do?

RP: In short, the pharmacopoeia is an official publication that includes a list of medicines and contains the preparation methods, instructions for use, and analytical methods for assessing the quality of these medicines. The United States Pharmacopoeia-National Formulary issued by USP is the official quality standard for drugs sold in the United States and is also used in more than 140 other countries. USP is a leading independent scientific non-profit organization that cooperates with the world’s top health and science experts to formulate quality standards for medicines, dietary supplements and food ingredients. Through our standards, advocacy, and capacity building, USP helps billions of people around the world increase the supply of quality medicines, supplements, and food. As the world becomes smaller and more connected, quality issues will affect everyone. Disease travel. Increased resistance. Fake medicine killed people. The quality foundation we are building can help meet these and other global health challenges. Whether it is to reduce the prevalence of substandard and low-quality drugs, or to help curb antimicrobial resistance, we are working hard to protect the health of people around the world at 10 sites around the world.

TM value: This seems to be a very modern medical method. Why did the United States need a Pharmacopoeia in 1820?

RP: Today, people believe that American medicines are among the safest in the world, but this is not always the case. In 1820, the United States was a new country. Medicines are manufactured individually and differently by doctors or pharmacists. There are no regulations or, more importantly, standards to ensure that what you receive in one city is the same as in another. The strength, quality, and even characteristics of a medicine vary from place to place. In short, before we were founded in 1820, there was no guarantee that the content on the drug label would match the content in the bottle. Our founders-11 independent, forward-looking doctors-worried about this lack of uniformity and took action to protect patients from poor-quality drugs. Our three founders are not only doctors, but also U.S. senators—they are the voices that the United States needs to ensure the quality of the drugs Americans use. They established the United States Pharmacopoeia Convention and published the first United States Pharmacopoeia. Great changes have taken place since our establishment, but the importance of setting quality standards for medicines and other new therapies still exists-now, our work is more global.

Image courtesy of USP

TM value: This year’s TEDMED theme “Make Way for Miracles” explores the changes that are taking place in medicine and healthcare. Is this a theme that resonates with you?

RP: Absolutely. Miracles and scientific discoveries make medical breakthroughs possible. But trust makes them popular. More than 800 independent volunteer scientists contributed their expertise to develop and approve USP standards. They help build trust by setting clear quality expectations for medicines, dietary supplements, and foods. In turn, USP standards help manufacturers around the world to bring more high-quality and affordable products to the market, which benefits people all over the world. A recent study by Johns Hopkins University found that, on average, there are about 50% more generic manufacturers of drugs with USP public quality standards than drugs without such standards.The study also found that quality standards help promote drug competition in the United States and reduce prescription drug costs

Image courtesy of USP

TM value: How can a 200-year-old organization prepare for the future?

RP: New technologies and new therapies—precision medicine, digital therapy, 3D printing, immunotherapy, gene and stem cell therapies, and artificial intelligence—have arrived or are about to come. As we prepare for major breakthroughs, we must work hard to ensure that trust and quality are built as part of these advancements. Unfortunately, trust is generally in a state of instability among various departments. Our history tells us that for innovation to become a universal reality, quality and trust are critical to its widespread acceptance. Together with hundreds of our stakeholder organizations and partners, USP is already working hard to build confidence in future breakthroughs, and predict and resolve gaps. We know that when USP public standards become available, we can help manufacturers better adopt new technologies, which can often save a lot of money. In addition to holding seminars and roundtables on topics such as cell and gene therapy and digital therapy, USP has also collaborated with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Center for Collective Intelligence and more than 100 leaders from the global health and science community to explore how trust will be in it The development and role played will shape people’s health from now to 2040. We will work with the TEDMED 2020 community to explore the project findings of this “Trusted Cooperative Laboratory”.

Image courtesy of USP

TM value: We look forward to learning more about Trust CoLab. Before that, should the TEDMED community still know about USP?

RP: I mentioned our volunteer scientists before. I invite members of the TEDMED community who are committed to making the world healthier, scientifically rigorous, independent of political or private sector work, to consider becoming trusted advocates. They can learn more by visiting our website or visiting the USP Lounge in the TEDMED Social Center. I also encourage everyone to learn more about USP’s past, present and future and opportunities to work with us on

TM value: Thank you, Ron, and best wishes at the beginning of the third century of USP.

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