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EMA Staff Losses Tick Up as Workload Increases

Posted 07 October 2019 | By Zachary Brennan 

EMA Staff Losses Tick Up as Workload Increases

As the interim arrangements to allow European Medicines Agency (EMA) staff to telework from London have now ended, the agency said its total available workforce in Amsterdam is about 730, which is about 20% less than the 900 staffers EMA had in London.

“Due to these ongoing resource constraints, delivery of EMA’s work programme for Q4 2019 will be challenging for the Agency, particularly in view of the need to implement new legislation for veterinary medicines and medical devices, which will bring additional workload,” the agency said in an EMA Management Board update.

The staff crunch also comes as the management board said the number of new initial evaluation applications for human medicines received in the first half of 2019 was 34% higher than that received during the same period in 2018 (63 in the first half of 2019 compared to 47 in the first half of 2018).

To meet the needs of this additional workload, EMA Executive Director Guido Rasi said the agency is reviewing its structure and looking to set up task forces that will focus on areas that are key priorities, such as digital business transformation, data analytics and methods, regulatory science and innovation, and clinical trials and manufacturing strategy.

Meanwhile, the management board also elected Lorraine Nolan as vice-chair for a three-year period. Nolan, chief executive of the Health Products Regulatory Agency (HPRA) in Ireland, has served as a member of EMA's Management Board since March 2016 and replaces Grzegorz Cessak of Poland as vice-chair.

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