Veronika Wirtz, PhD, MSc
Associate Professor
Boston University School of Public Health
Dept of Global Health

PhD, University of London
MSc, University of London

Veronika J. Wirtz, MSc, PhD is an Associate Professor in the Department of Global Health at the Boston University School of Public Health, where she is also Director of the World Health Organization Collaborating Center in Pharmaceutical Policy. Her research focuses on health system strengthening and policy and program evaluations of medicines access and utilization. She is a Visiting Professor of the National Institute of Public Health (INSP) in Mexico and coordinator of a student exchange program between the institutions of her affiliation.

Her interest and expertise include medicines price analysis, generic medicines policies, quality use of medicines, access to medicines for non-communicable diseases and the role of the private sector to promote equitable access and efficient use of medicines in low and middle income countries. Among other international studies Dr Wirtz carried out cross-national comparison of medicines consumption using large sales data bases to inform policy making about adequate use of medicines and prevention of antimicrobial resistance.

Between 2014 and 2016 she was the Co-Chair of The Lancet Commission on Essential Medicine Policies. The Commission had the goals of (1) re-confirming the ongoing relevance, and the crucial need of comprehensive essential medicines policies to achieve broader global health and sustainable development goals, especially universal health coverage and (2) formulating recommendations for global essential medicine policies for the next two decades. The Report of the Commission Essential Medicines for Universal Coverage was published in 2016.

From 2004 to 2012 she was researcher and lecturer at the National Institute of Public Health (INSP) in Mexico and a founding member and Head of the Medicines in Public Health Research Group which is a multi-disciplinary team of 15 experts in health economics, epidemiology, social science carrying out pharmaceutical policy analysis in Mexico and Latin America. Over the last years she has regularly taught short courses in Pharmacoepidemiology and Medicines Utilization Research at INSP in Mexico.

She has worked as a technical adviser for various international organizations, among them the World Health Organization, the Pan American Health Organization, the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Alliance for Health Systems and Policy Research, Health Action International and the Ford Foundation. She has also worked with the Ministry of Health in Mexico on various program evaluations and capacity building initiatives. She published widely in international peer review journals such as The Lancet, British Medical Journal, World Health Organization Bulletin, Health Policy and Planning, Health Policy, Value in Health, Social Science and Medicine, Tropical Medicine and International Health. Since Fall 2016 she is Associate Editor of Health Systems & Reform, a leading journal publishing health system and policy research.

She received her training as a pharmacist from Albert-Ludwigs-University in Freiburg, Germany and her Master in Clinical Pharmacy and PhD from the University of London in the UK.

2014-2016 The Lancet Commission on Essential Medicines Policies: Co-Chair
2009-2014 National System of Researchers (SNI), National Council for Science and Technology, Mexico : Member
2009-2010 Coordinating Commission of the National Institutes of Health and Tertiary Hospitals, Mexico: Excellence in Research Productivity
2007 Research Conference of the National Institutes of Health and Tertiary Hospitals, Mexico: Nominee for Best Research Presentation
2007-2009 National System of Researchers (SNI), National Council for Science and Technology, Mexico: Awarded Membership as Candidate
1999-2004 School of Pharmacy, University of London: PhD Studies Scholarship

Novartis Access Initiative Task Order 4
11/01/2017 - 12/31/2018 (Co-PI)
PI: Richard Laing, MBChB, MSc (CHDC) MD
Sandoz International GmbH

Country collaborations on medicines: identifying opportunities to improve performance (Phase 1)
05/15/2018 - 06/10/2018 (PI)
World Health Organization

Novartis Access Initiative Task Order 3
10/01/2016 - 04/30/2018 (Co-PI)
PI: Richard Laing, MBChB, MSc (CHDC) MD
Sandoz International GmbH

Novartis Access Initiative Task Order 2
04/29/2016 - 02/28/2018 (Co-PI)
PI: Richard Laing, MBChB, MSc (CHDC) MD
Sandoz International GmbH

10/01/2015 - 02/28/2018 (PI)
Management Sciences for Health USAID

Addressing the Challenge and Constraints of Insulin Sources and Supply (ACCISS) Study
03/17/2017 - 08/31/2017 (PI)
Health Action International Leona&Harry Helmsley

Quality of Medical Products & Public Health Course
07/10/2017 - 07/14/2017 (PI)
Medicines for Malaria Ventures

Novartis Access Initiative Task Order 1
12/01/2015 - 04/30/2017 (Co-PI)
PI: Richard Laing, MBChB, MSc (CHDC) MD
Sandoz International GmbH

The Lancet Commission on Essential Medicine Policies
02/20/2015 - 09/30/2016 (PI)
Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

Yr Title Project-Sub Proj Pubs
Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Faculty can login to make corrections and additions.

  1. Mehrtash H, Laing R, Wirtz VJ. Comparative analysis of essential medicines for cardiovascular diseases in countries of the WHO Eastern Mediterranean Region. East Mediterr Health J. 2018 Jul 17; 24(5):427-434.View Related Profiles. PMID: 30043961.
  2. Rockers PC, Reich MR, Kettler H, Wirtz VJ. Commitment to Impact: Strengthening Measurement of Industry-Led Access-to-Medicines Programs. Health Syst Reform. 2018 Jun 26; 1-6.View Related Profiles. PMID: 30060703.
  3. Rockers PC, Laing RO, Wirtz VJ. Equity in access to non-communicable disease medicines: a cross-sectional study in Kenya. BMJ Glob Health. 2018; 3(3):e000828.View Related Profiles. PMID: 29989082.
  4. Wirtz VJ, Turpin K, Laing RO, Mukiira CK, Rockers PC. Access to medicines for asthma, diabetes and hypertension in eight counties of Kenya. Trop Med Int Health. 2018 May 29.View Related Profiles. PMID: 29808960; DOI: 10.1111/tmi.13081;.
  5. Serván-Mori E, Wirtz VJ. Monetary and nonmonetary household consumption of health services and the role of insurance benefits: An analysis of the Mexico's National Household Income and Expenditure Survey. Int J Health Plann Manage. 2018 May 23. PMID: 29790595.
  6. Barakat D, Rockers PC, Vian T, Onyango MA, Laing RO, Wirtz VJ. Access to asthma medicines at the household level in eight counties of Kenya. Int J Tuberc Lung Dis. 2018 May 01; 22(5):585-590.View Related Profiles. PMID: 29663966.
  7. Soria-Saucedo R, Lopez-Ridaura R, Lajous M, Wirtz VJ. The prevalence and correlates of severe depression in a cohort of Mexican teachers. J Affect Disord. 2018 07; 234:109-116. PMID: 29525351.
  8. Wirtz VJ, Moucheraud C. Beyond availability and affordability: how access to medicines affects non-communicable disease outcomes. Lancet Public Health. 2017 09; 2(9):e390-e391. PMID: 29253405.
  9. Vogler S, Paris V, Ferrario A, Wirtz VJ, de Joncheere K, Schneider P, Pedersen HB, Dedet G, Babar ZU. How Can Pricing and Reimbursement Policies Improve Affordable Access to Medicines? Lessons Learned from European Countries. Appl Health Econ Health Policy. 2017 Jun; 15(3):307-321. PMID: 28063134; DOI: 10.1007/s40258-016-0300-z;.
  10. Kaplan WA, Ashigbie PG, Brooks MI, Wirtz VJ. Comparison of medicines management strategies in insurance schemes in middle-income countries: four case studies. J Pharm Policy Pract. 2017; 10:17.View Related Profiles. PMID: 28523128.
Showing 10 of 106 results. Show More

This graph shows the total number of publications by year, by first, middle/unknown, or last author.

Bar chart showing 105 publications over 17 distinct years, with a maximum of 15 publications in 2013

In addition to these self-described keywords below, a list of MeSH based concepts is available here.

Health Systems Research
Pharmaceutical Policy Research
Drug Utilization
Low Income Populations
Latin America
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