WHO Programme for International Drug Monitoring

A vital, global collaboration to protect patients from the harm that medicines can cause.

What is the WHO programme?

The WHO Programme for International Drug Monitoring is a group of more than 150 countries that share the vision of safer and more effective use of medicines. They work nationally and collaborate internationally to monitor and identify the harm caused by medicines, to reduce the risks to patients and to establish worldwide pharmacovigilance standards and systems. UMC has been responsible for the technical and operational aspects of the programme since 1978.

The WHO programme was created in 1968 to ensure that evidence about harm to patients was collected from as many sources as possible. This would enable individual countries to be alerted to patterns of harm that were emerging across the world and which might not be evident from their local data alone.

Being a member

Membership of the WHO programme offers many benefits and opportunities.

More on membership

Joining the WHO Programme

Members of the WHO programme

Currently 149 countries are members of the WHO Programme for International Drug Monitoring. Another 23 associate members are in the early stages of establishing their pharmacovigilance systems in preparation for full membership.

For more information about individual members of the WHO programme click on the map

Dark blue: Full member. Light blue: Associate member. White: Non-member.

*This map is an approximation of actual country borders.

Our role in the programme

UMC was created in 1978 as the WHO Collaborating Centre for International Drug Monitoring. The work we do potentially affects everyone on earth, with our success in building a global family and culture of patient safety a story of positive, international cooperation.

UMC and the WHO programme

Medicines safety at WHO

A global network of specialist expertise

In addition to UMC in Sweden there are three other WHO Collaborating Centres working in pharmacovigilance: the WHO Collaborating Centre for Strengthening Pharmacovigilance Practices, Morocco; the WHO Collaborating Centre for Drug Statistics Methodology, Norway; and the WHO Collaborating Centre for Pharmacovigilance in Public Health Programmes and Regulatory Services, India.

Collaborating Centres for pharmacovigilance

Find out more