WHO Launches Platform for Standardised Medical Device Information
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An online WHO platform gathers information about various medical devices: from simple syringes to complex hospital equipment.

To help countries and organisations navigate a complex pool of over 10,000 different medical devices, the World Health Organization (WHO) launched an online platform on Monday that will collect and standardise the information about medical equipment.

Medical Devices Information System, or MeDevIS, is inspired by the WHO Priority Medical Devices List (MDL) and the Essential Medicines List, the latter of which will soon have existed for 50 years, serving as an important support for health progress globally.

MeDevIS includes 2,301 types of medical devices of varying levels of complexity: from single-use syringes, medical masks, and pulse oximeters, to imaging radiology technologies, implantable prostheses, or defibrillators.

“The number of medical technologies used in health care is growing, as is their complexity, which can make it challenging for health care practitioners and patients to navigate,” said Dr Yukiko Nakatani, WHO Assistant Director-General for Access to Medicines and Health Products. 

The aim is for a “one-stop shop of international information” to help stakeholders to find appropriate equipment.

The new platform references both major naming systems for medical devices, renowned internationally: the European Medical Device Nomenclature (EMDN) and the Global Medical Device Nomenclature (GMDN), used in some countries outside of the European region. Both systems facilitate handling specific types of equipment on the regulatory and logistics levels.

MeDivIS also features information about the infrastructure required for the device, the healthcare facility level where it is typically used, and links to thematic WHO guidelines connected with the branch of care for which the equipment is made.

“The MeDevIS platform can be useful for national policy-makers to develop or update their own national lists for the procurement of health technologies and devices and can contribute to the progress towards universal health coverage,” said Dr Deus Mubangizi, WHO Director for Health Products Policy and Standards.


Image Credits: Unsplash.

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