The Baume report (1991) recommended pharmaceutical companies (Sponsors) provide a CMI leaflet in the primary pack, or by other means, for all new and/or variations of existing prescription products by 1 January 1993. This posed a currency issue for Sponsors whose products required frequent revisions.
The Sponsors, who are also members of Medicines Australia, collaborated with us in a pilot to establish the feasibility of electronic distribution of CMI. The pilot was completed by July 1993 and in June 1995 we launched the first electronic distribution of CMI.
An industry group, known today as the Electronic Distribution Working Group (EDWG), emerged from the pilot and comprises:
- Members of the pharmaceutical industry, both originator and generic
- Pharmacy Guild of Australia (PGoA)
- Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA)
- Society of Hospital Pharmacists of Australia (SHPA)
- Arthritis Australia
- Australian Self Medication Industry (ASMI)
- Australian General Practice Network (AGPN)
- GuildLink - Medicines Information
EDWG provides us with ongoing input and guidance into development of policies for electronic distribution of medicines information in Australia.
Without this system, pharmacists, doctors, and consumers would not have access to a consolidated up-to-date source of medicine information.