Implementation timeline

In March 2017, the first full B3/C3 format files were made available for download along with the B2/C-format files.

WHODrug Global

The B2-format will coexist in parallel with the B3/C3 formats until September 2018. Please note that from June 2017 the B2-format is produced in a limited version exclusively updated with new inserts (i.e. new ATC codes and drug names), no records are deleted and modifications on existing records are not included.

The C-format will also be available, upon request, together with the B3/C3 formats until September 2018. Please note that, similarly to the B2-format, the C-format will exist in a limited version which is updated with new inserts only. If you wish to retrieve the C-format data it needs to be requested with three months notice.

In March 2019 the new B3/C3 formats will definitively replace the B2/C formats.

The old WHODrug Dictionaries types

All dictionary types (WHODrug Enhanced; WHODrug Enhanced and WHODrug Herbal; WHODrug Global) will be available in B2/B3/C3 formats as described in figure 1 and with the limitations communicated in the WHODrug Global, transition plan, please refer to this document for details. The only exception is the C-format, which will be available upon request only.

Figure 1. The WHODrug Dictionaries types, formats and releases timeline


WHODrug SDGs will be exclusively compatible with the B3-format starting from June 1st 2017.

WHODrug additional products

During the complete transition period, 2017-2018, WHODrug Cross Reference ATC 5 will be made available in two datasets, one compatible with the B2 format and one compatible with the B3-format.

Please note that Cross Reference Tool Japan will instead be exclusively compatible with the B3-format starting from June 1st 2017.

Figure 2. *updated with new inserts only. Timeline illustrating in which formats the WHODrug products will be released during 2017-2019

The details of the new formats as well as available UMC recommendations are explained in the below guidance document .


More about WHODrug

Last modified on: November 28, 2020