About this programme

Working together for better medicines


The WHO issued its report ‘Priority Medicines for Europe and the World’, detailing what medicines society needs, at the request of the Dutch Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport. The Netherlands responded by establishing the Top Institute Pharma (TI Pharma). ZonMw submitted proposals for four programmes to the Ministry in 2006-2007: 

  • Priority Medicines voor Kinderen
  • Priority Medicines voor Ouderen
  • Priority Medicines and Antimicrobial Resistance
  • Priority Medicines for Rare Conditions and Orphan Drugs

The Priority Medicines and Antimicrobial Resistance, Priority Medicines voor Ouderen and Priority Medicines voor kinderen programmes will launch in 2009.

ERA-NET Priority Medicines for Children

Priority Medicines for Children (PRIOMEDCHILD) is a European partnership involving national research funding bodies that finance research into medicines for children. ZonMw coordinates the consortium. The aim of the partnership is to strengthen and improve research into medicines for children.

PRIOMEDCHILD has compiled a list of national research programmes in this area and ensures that knowledge is exchanged between the participating countries. The legal, social and ethical context of research into medicines for children has been identified and the potential for public-private partnerships is being explored. Once subjects for a European research agenda have been prioritised, the ultimate aim of the programme will be to launch a European research programme. This is expected to occur in 2009, and will be announced both on this site and on the PRIOMEDCHILD website.
For more information on the participating countries, publications, recent developments and contact details, please visit the website.

For more information please visit the PRIOMEDCHILD website.


Priority medicines are treatments for existing and emerging diseases for which only substandard medicines are currently available, if at all. In this case, ‘substandard’ means medicines that produce many side-effects in patients, or are insufficiently effective, or are not properly tailored to the patients in question. The term ‘medicines’ is used in the broad sense, and includes new forms of treatment based on biotechnology, including tissue engineering and gene therapy. Research into ways of administering treatment would also tie in with the innovative character of this programme.

The Priority Medicines for Children programme was launched in 2004 in response to the WHO report ‘Priority Medicines for Europe and the World’.

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