The Potential Role of Social Media in Pharmacovigilance in Nepal: Glimpse from a Resource-limited Setting FE04-FE07
Department of Pharmacy, Nepal Cancer Hospital and Research Center, Harisiddhi, Lalitpur, Nepal.
Introduction: An ever-increasing trend in the use of social media offers a potential forum for exchanging information in developing countries. Easy access, quick dissemination and widespread use necessitate the incorporation of social media in adverse drug reactions reporting and pharmacovigilance activities.
Aim: To highlight the potential role of the use of social media in pharmacovigilance activities in a developing country like Nepal.
Materials and Methods: A review of all relevant literature was conducted from scholargoogle and PubMed databases using the search terms ‘Social media’, ‘Pharmacovigilance’, ‘Nepal’, ‘drug safety’, ‘social network’ and ‘adverse drug reaction’. In addition, a general search was conducted in Google search engine using similar terminologies. The identified literature was reviewed by the authors and the most relevant ones within the scope of the topic were included.
Results: Social media use is common; the number of social media users is on increasing trend even in developing countries like Nepal. There are some unique scopes of social media in pharmacovigilance, including improving awareness, reporting and signal detection. In resource-limited settings, social media can play a crucial role in disseminating drug safety and related information. Incorporating social media in pharmacovigilance has challenges, particularly the problem associated with the authenticity and validity of information available in social media platform.
Conclusion: Social media may have an opportunity in the pharmacovigilance system. However, there is limited evidence about its feasibility and validity. Systematic research should be conducted to investigate the feasibility of using social media for the pharmacovigilance system.