The introduction of the Drug Interaction Database has received international recognition

The Estonian Health Insurance Fund received a prize in the International Quality and Innovation Competition for the introduction of a Drug Interaction Register in the e-Prescription system.

Concomitant use of several different medicinal products increases the likelihood of interaction and side effects. The medications are prescribed by different physicians, and the patient may not remember to inform the physician of the medication prescribed by another physician. Each month, physicians prescribe about 40,000 pairs of medicinal products, the interaction of which should generally be avoided. 

In order to enable physicians to assess better the interactions of the medicines used by the patient and improve the quality of treatment, starting from the year 2016 the EHIF has enabled the use of the free Drug Interaction Assessment Database for all the prescribers of medicinal products. The database is connected to the e-Prescription, and at the moment of prescribing, the system checks the patient's prescriptions and informs the physician of the interaction. The database finds combinations from the patient treatment regimens that can potentially interact and provides guidance on how to adjust the treatment regimen if necessary. Sometimes the medicinal products should be replaced; often dose adjustment is sufficient. In subsequent years, pharmacists, performing sale of over-the-counter medicines or food supplements, will also be able to evaluate interactions.

On February 8, the Prize was handed over by the Estonian Ambassador to Spain, Rasmus Lumi to Liis Kruus, Chief Specialist of the Drugs and Medical Devices Division of EHIF, and Seidi Vilba, the Head of the System Development Division of EHIF, who made significant contributions to the implementation of the database. 

The International Quality and Innovation Competition "Quality Innovation Award" is organized by the organizations of 13 countries, including the Estonian Quality Association. The patron of the competition is Sauli Niinistö, President of the Republic of Finland. The winner of the competition was the pharmaceutical company Gilead for a portfolio of hepatitis C drugs. The competition has been held since the year 2007.