President of Portugal honours INFARMED, I.P.


19 jan 2023

The distinction was awarded during the event that featured the Minister of Health, Manuel Pizarro in the opening session, and also with the presence of the Secretary of State for Health, Ricardo Mestre, as well as numerous national and European personalities, such as the Director-General of Health of the European Commission, Sandra Galina and the Executive Director of the European Medicines Agency, Emer Cooke.

In his speech, Manuel Pizarro made a special reference to the presence of "guests from important European institutions", highlighting the fact that "they signal the importance of our insertion in the European space in this domain, but also the enormous prestige of Infarmed", underlining that the country itself shares the international recognition of the institution.

Infarmed's Auditorium was too small to receive all those who joined in the celebration, all Infarmed's partners, all the services of the Ministry of Health, a wide range of Public Administration institutions from various ministries, universities, research centres and health units, professional associations, associations of people with diseases, associations of the sectors regulated by Infarmed (namely the pharmaceutical, medical device and cosmetics industries, distributors and pharmacies).

The session also included former members of the Government in the area of Health, former presidents and other Infarmed leaders.

The programme was marked by a keynote speech given by the European Commission's Director-General for Health, Sandra Gallina, on how to shape the future of medicines and medical devices. It also included a round table discussion on the theme "Collaborating and communicating together is the answer", in which the Executive Director of the European Medicines Agency, Emer Cooke, the Director of the Spanish Agency for Medicines and Health Products, Maria Lamas, the Executive Director of the NHS, Fernando Araújo, and Luís Mendão from the GAT, all participated.

The event ended with a homage to former employees of Infarmed.

The closing session was honoured by the presence of the President of the Republic, who began his speech by noting his great pleasure in accompanying the 30th anniversary of Infarmed, an institution with "three decades of a rich past and full of remarkable moments".

Regarding Infarmed's contribution throughout its history, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa pointed out that "through its conduct and the credibility gained over these three decades, the confidence of the population of Portugal, regarding the use of medicines and health products, has become unquestionable", underlining the international area and their "great contribution to our country's diplomacy", as well as highlighting Infarmed as "one of the most solid regulatory agencies, projecting Portugal beyond its borders".

During his speech, the President also stated that "we can never allow people, who are the ones that make the institutions… to take second place, and that is why we have the obligation to create the conditions so that they can continue to perform their functions here and bring more and more prestige to Portugal".

At this very significant milestone for Infarmed, its Board of Directors expressed, on behalf of all the employees of the institution, past and present, its public gratitude to His Excellency the President of the Republic for the honour received. This honour reflects the merit of everyone's work over these 30 years in protecting the health of Portuguese and European citizens, and the quality and solidity of our scientific activity and ensuring the safety of medicines and health products. This award also recognises the trust Infarmed deserves from the Portuguese public and the prestige it has achieved at European and international level, adding value to our country.

The Executive Board dedicated this distinction to all the employees who, in such a dedicated, competent and rigorous manner, assume excellence as the hallmark of their work in all the functions of the institution, considering that to receive the status of honorary member of the Order of Merit from the President whose motto is "Well-deserved", is the best stimulus for the future.

And quoting the words of the President of the Executive Board, Rui Santos Ivo, in his opening speech: "We need a statute with more autonomy, but, at the same time, with more responsibility, a new statute essential for our employees and for the new future we are building".