The European Medicines Agency has published guidance for pharmaceutical companies on how to prepare and review summaries of product characteristics (SmPCs) for human medicines. The guidance consists of a set of presentations detailing the information that should be included in each of the sections of the SmPC, together with background information on SmPCs both as a presentation and a video. Two videos explaining how to complete the SmPC sections on the therapeutic indication and pharmacodynamic properties of a medicine and on undesirable effects are also available.
The guidance, prepared by the Agency’s SmPC Advisory Group, outlines the principles in the European Commission’s guideline on SmPC. It is intended to enable companies to make sure that the information in SmPCs is of high quality when they submit them to the Agency as part of applications for new marketing authorisations or updates to existing marketing authorisations. The background presentation and video also aim to raise awareness of the information provided in SmPCs among healthcare professionals.
SmPCs are a key part of the marketing authorisation of all medicines authorised in the European Union and the basis of information for healthcare professionals on how to use a medicine safely and effectively. They are kept updated throughout the lifecycle of a medicine as new efficacy or safety data emerge. SmPCs are also the basis for the preparation of package leaflets, so are important documents in enabling information on medicines to reach patients.