Committee on Herbal Medicinal Products

Authors: Prof. Dr. med. Peter Altmeyer, Prof. Dr. med. Martina Bacharach-Buhles

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Last updated on: 05.06.2021

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Acronym for "Committee on Herbal Medicinal Products" of the European Medicines Agency. The HMPC was established at the European Medicines Agency (EMA, London) in 2004 on the basis of a European regulation. The HMPC is one of a total of seven scientific committees of the EMA and underlines the importance that the European Parliament attaches to the harmonisation of the evaluation of herbal medicinal products and their availability in the European Union.

The Committee consists of one technical representative appointed by each Member State (staff of the national authorities or experts from universities) and five co-opted members representing specific subject areas. Currently, these are, for example, general medicine, paediatrics, pharmacology and toxicology.

General information
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The HMPC and its scientific working parties are involved in the preparation of herbal monographs. One of the main tasks of the HMPC is the harmonisation of the regulations for the use of phytotherapeutics in Europe.

One of the main tasks of the HPMC is the preparation of Community herbal monographs, a task for which Commission E was responsible in the Federal Republic of Germany until 1994. The HMPC monographs thus represent the new regulatory European standard (valid for the member states of the European Union). Not only the summaries are published in the form of the monographs, but also assessment reports and reference lists.

It is possible to obtain information on the current state of scientific knowledge at any time. The adopted monographs are an important basis for decision-making by the national regulatory authorities in all European states.

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For a long time, the monographs of Commission E represented the official standard valid in Germany. This was recognised and respected worldwide. The Commission E monographs have not been updated since 1994. Thus, the HMPC is de facto the successor of Commission E.