Europe – Making best use of big data for public health: publication of the Big Data Steering Group workplan for 2020-21

The Big Data Steering Group set up by EMA and the Heads of Medicines Agencies (HMA) has published its workplan  which sets actions to be delivered in 2020-21. With the European Medicines Regulatory Network focused on the response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the workplan aims to progress evolution to data-driven regulation through smart working, leveraging collaboration with stakeholders and the use of remote expert workshops.

In the past three years, EMA and HMA have led a thorough assessment of the challenges and opportunities posed by big data in medicines regulation. This culminated in January 2020 with the publication of recommendations for regulators to evolve their approach to data use and evidence generation.

Following this preparatory work, the Big Data Steering Group was established in February 2020 to advise the EMA Management Board and HMA on implementing ten priority recommendations.

Its first workplan, published today, aims to increase the utility of big data in regulation from the quality of data through study methods to assessment and decision-making. It foresees closely involving patients and is guided by advances in science and technology. Other stakeholders will also be involved and the workplan intends to leverage international collaboration. Stakeholders will have the opportunity to discuss the workplan and its implementation in the context of a virtual multi-stakeholder forum scheduled for late 2020…