EMA Highlights: EMA chief ‘building leaner organisation’

by Gary Finnegan: The European Medicines Agency (EMA) has restructured its staff in a bid to efficiently deal changing demand. The Agency faces the challenge of keeping up with growing demand without consuming additional resources.

Changes introduced on 1 September will make it “leader, more streamlined organisation”, improving its effectiveness, the Agency said.

“We want to do more with the resources we have by designing the Agency’s structures and processes around the lifespan of medicines,” said EMA’s Executive Director Guido Rasi. “With the changes announced today we are fine-tuning our operating model which has proven successful over the past two years and strengthening the efficiency of our administration.”

Among the major changes are a reduction in the number of divisions dealing with human medicines from four to three. There are now divisions responsible for supporting medicines developers, the evaluation of medicines, and oversight of medicines – including pharmacovigilance and inspections.

A new function has been created to strengthen collaboration between EMA and national authorities. The Agency, which signed a 25-year lease on new headquarters in London this year but is expected to relocate post-Brexit, also slimmed down its administrative and corporate services.

“Interactions between stakeholders and the Agency will not be affected by these changes,” the EMA said.