The HPCUS Friends of the Pharmacopoeia Program
By Dr. William Shevin, President, HPCUS
Due to challenges in general for homeopathy and specifically for the Homeopathic Pharmacopoeia Convention of the United States (HPCUS), the standards-setting organization is launching a new “Friends of the Pharmacopoeia” program.
Changes in the regulatory environment, beginning in 2015, led to the initiation of a white paper project to address compatibility issues between Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) in the Homeopathic Pharmacopoeia of the United States (HPUS) and the International Council for Harmonisation of Technical Requirements for Pharmaceuticals for Human Use (ICH) and U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) guidelines. This has been a complex and expensive project, requiring the involvement of highly credible experts from outside the homeopathic community acting as paid consultants.
At the same time, HPCUS lost two unrestricted corporate grants, owing to changes in the manufacturing sector.
Simultaneously, the HPCUS Board of Directors began to grapple with issues of retirement and succession.
Lastly, we realized that the larger homeopathic community did not have much understanding of either the vital importance of HPCUS, the legal basis for homeopathic medicines, how HPCUS functions, or how we have been working to meet important challenges.
These issues coalesced when I was elected president of the Convention in April 2020. My first instinct was to reach out to leaders in various sectors of the homeopathic community. In collaborative discussions, the Friends of the Pharmacopoeia project emerged.
Ultimately, the Friends program is a community-building effort. Membership in the program is priced at an intentionally small fee of $35 annually to encourage participation rather than fundraising.
Friends will have exclusive access to broad and in-depth information regarding the Convention and, importantly, about the challenges that homeopathy faces.
Friends will be able to comment and ask questions, and we intend to respond. If the program enrolls enough members, this activity will be expanded to include discussion groups. As the program continues to grow, webinars, online Q&A, inputs from other groups, and other yet unimagined activities can be added to our community’s shared network of resources.
Friends will have the opportunity to offer their specific skills that may be useful to the Convention in fulfilling its vital roles.
Active participation may also lead to involving Friends at the policymaking and governance levels of the Convention. We need new, younger members, and these should come primarily from within the homeopathic community.
A successful Friends of the Pharmacopoeia program will help HPCUS to maintain access to safe, high-quality homeopathic drug products.
The Friends program will open to the homeopathic community and the public shortly the Convention’s new website is launched, which is tentatively scheduled for June 5. Those on the AAHP email distribution list will be notified at that time of the Friends program, as well as a webinar offering a guided tour of the new website. We encourage all companies to promote this community-building and information-sharing activity with your clients, customers, and associates.
Please contact me, Dr. William Shevin, directly with your comments and ideas. or to explore ways in which you might join this effort.