Medical devices and equipment
The devices group in WHO carries out activities to ensure the safety of patients, health-care workers and the community with regard to medical devices and equipment. Its activities are carried out within the following four strategic areas.
- Development of national policy: tools to assess and strengthen national regulatory authorities, including the recent medical device regulations: global overview and guiding principles, in order to promote national coordination and management of equipment.
- Quality and safety: elements such as the elaboration of new ISO standards and WHO performance specifications, the pre-qualification of suppliers, the development of standardized procedures for alerts and recalls, and tools to assess safety and performance of products, in order to reduce risks linked to substandard products and procedures.
- Access: quality management systems covering identification of equipment needs, and the selection, procurement and distribution process. Tools include the development of a model list of essential equipment, the WHO Essential Healthcare Technology Package, guidelines for good donation practices and increased collaboration with industry.
- Appropriate use of equipment in order to reduce risks: elaboration and diffusion of materials on information, education and communication and of training manuals for managers and users of equipment, particularly as regards preventive maintenance.