Pesticide Registration Toolkit
Decision Support System for Pesticide Registrars in Developing Countries

Institutional aspects of public health pesticide registration


The principles and procedures of registering a public health pesticide are very similar to agricultural pesticides. Therefore, WHO and FAO recommend – in their joint Guidelines for the registration of pesticides that the same authority evaluates and registers all types of pesticides (see graphic below). This will not only make better use of often limited human and financial resources, but also reduce the cost of operating the scheme, ensure more efficient use of combined expertise and facilitate close collaboration between stakeholders. Furthermore, it may reduce the cost of registration to the applicant and hence the cost of pesticides to the user. Finally, since many pesticides are used both in agriculture and in public health, separate registration schemes can result in inconsistencies regarding the authorized uses of a pesticide product.

However, in some countries separate registration schemes do exist. For instance, public health pesticides are registered by the ministry responsible for health while plant protection products are registered by the ministry responsible for agriculture. In such a situation, consistency in evaluation and decision making can be strengthened by applying common evaluation procedures or having a  single national pesticide registration board. Regular information exchange between different registration authorities in the same country is a highly recommended as a first step.

The World Health Organization (WHO) plays an important role in the evaluation of one of the three groups of public health of pesticides, i.e. vector control products. The WHO conducts international assessments of new vector control products which can be used for decision making by national or regional pesticide registration authorities, and reduce their workload. More information about international evaluations by WHO is provided elsewhere.


Optimizing resources for public health pesticide registration. Common evaluation procedures or a single national pesticide registration board (centre) makes better use of limited resources. A single authority for all pesticides best optimizes pesticide registration (right).

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