Essential medicines and health products

The Interagency Pharmaceutical Coordination group (IPC)

Senior pharmaceutical advisers from UN agencies such as the World Health Organization, the Joint United Nations programme of HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and from other international institutions such as the World Bank, the African Development Bank, the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (GFATM) and UNITAID meet every six months to:

  • Share information on their respective programmes, achievements and challenges in medicines policy;
  • explore areas of common interest and synergies for collaboration;
  • coordinate the underlying pharmaceutical policies of technical advice to countries;
  • plan and coordinate the preparation of interagency statements and technical documents.

Rationale for the IPC

The IPC was set up to address the need for better coordination amongst the increasing number of agencies working towards improving access to and use of quality assured medicines as a means of achieving health-related Millennium Development Goals and Universal Health Coverage. Collaboration amongst the different development agencies has led a better exchange of information, more consistency of the technical advice given and to improved use of resources.


The first meeting was held in Stockholm in 1996, on the initiative of the Swedish Government. Since then the IPC group has met every year at six-monthly intervals. Meetings are hosted once a year by WHO in Geneva and once a year by alternating IPC member agencies.

22 – 23 June 2017, WHO Headquarters, Geneva, Switzerland
08-09 December 2016, WHO Headquarters, Geneva, Switzerland
06-10 June 2016, World Bank, Washington D.C.
10-11 Decembre 2015, WHO Headquarters, Geneva, Switzerland
18-19 June 2015, Copenhagen, Denmark, UNICEF Supply Division
16-17 December 2014, Washington DC 2014, the World Bank
4-6 June 2014, Geneva, Switzerland
30-31 May 2013, Geneva, Switzerland
11-12 December 2012, Washington DC
31 May-1 June 2012, Geneva, Switzerland

Presentations available upon request

30 November – 2 December 2011, Copenhagen, Denmark

Interagency documents and guidelines

Links to IPC members

Gilles Forte
Department of Essential Medicines and Health Products
World Health Organization