Terminology

One of our activities as a WHO Collaborating Centre according to the Terms of Reference is to “work on the development and promotion of a common understanding and language on pharmaceutical issues”.

We developed a glossary of pharmaceutical terms in English language (for the methodology of its development see the background document) and have been enlarging, revising and updating it regularly since 2006. As of today, the WHO CC glossary comprises more than 400 terms, including several terms of relevance for the in-patient pharmaceutical sector.

The most updated version of the glossary is available online, with a search function under the section Glossary.

The WHO Collaborating Centre has been working on disseminating the use of the common terminology, e.g. by coordinating it with its indicators development work and by referring to it in the “Guidelines to the Authors” in the country profiles (templates).

On request, we also offer training sessions for the use of the glossary.

One aspect of our dissemination activities of the glossary is to encourage translations into national languages. Further information about glossaries in national languages can be found in the section Glossary; glossaries are available for download in the Publications section.

The development of the glossary was started within the framework of the PPRI and PHIS projects, and will be continued by our Centre. We are pleased that other projects refer to our glossary (e.g. EASP project, EMINet project, EUNetHTA), and it served as a model for the glossary of the WHO/Global Fund Pharmaceutical Country Profile Project and was also acknowledged by a reviewer: “The uptake of several PHIS Glossary terms in the glossary of the WHO/Global Fund Pharmaceutical Country Profile Project can be seen as a proof of success of the PHIS Glossary.” (PHIS Evaluation Report 2011).