Configure Adverse Event Watchlists

Configure Watchlists to flag and monitor Adverse Events of Special Interest (AESI) under a product or study.

Note Beginning with 24R1 in April 2024 and for all subsequent releases, the new Vault Safety Help site is the official site for all Vault Safety Help content. This site reflects updates until the 23R3 release only. For the latest information, visit the new site.

About Watchlists

Set up a Watchlist to monitor Adverse Events of Special Interest (AESI) and other Important Medical Events (IMEs). You can configure Watchlists to always expedite Cases, regardless of the Case expectedness or causality.

Watchlists can be created for marketed products, combination products, or studies. They can also be created without being based on a product or study. Cases with an adverse event that matches a Watchlist MedDRA term are tagged with the appropriate Watchlist Tag during Case processing in the Watchlist Tags field.

Designated Medical Events (DME) Watchlist

The official DME Watchlist is available by default in all Vault Safety Vaults. By default, the DME watchlist monitors only Cases with a product or study registered in a country under the jurisdiction of the EMA.

When a Case Adverse Event MedDRA term matches to an entry in the DME Watchlist, Vault Safety tags the Case as a DME and expedites the reporting due date. Any MedDRA term is considered a match if it is listed on or falls under the hierarchy of the term on the Watchlist.


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    Make the Organization Field Mandatory

    1. Go to Configuration > Objects > MedDRA Criteria > Object Types.
    2. Go to the Watchlist Field Criteria object type, and then select the Organization field.

      Note If you don't see the Watchlist Criteria object type, add this object type under the MedDRA Criteria object. Contact your Veeva Services representative for assistance.

    3. In the Organization field, ensure User must always enter a value (required)* is selected.
      Do not modify the Criteria VQL.
    4. If watchlists were already added to your Vault before enabling this setting, go to each watchlist and manually specify the Organization field in the System section.


    The system will automatically populate the Organization field for all new MedDRA Criteria records, using the default Criteria VQL.

Set Up a Watchlist

To set up a new Watchlist, create the Watchlist, and then add the Case field updates. When you save the Watchlist, the MedDRA Terms and MedDRA Queries sections appear. By adding MedDRA Criteria and MedDRA Query records in these sections, you can list adverse events to be watched.

Create a Watchlist

  1. Go to Business Admin > Objects > Watchlists.
  2. Select Create.
  3. On the Create Watchlist page, complete the following fields:
    • Organization: Select the organization that monitors the watchlist.
    • Name: Enter a name for the watchlist.
    • Watchlist Tag: Select a Watchlist Tag with which to label Cases that match this watchlist.
    • Study: (Optional) To monitor cases associated with a study, select the Study.

      If you select a Study with Unspecified Products, Watchlist Tags are applied to Case Products with a Drug Role of Suspect or Interacting on Cases for that Study.

    • Study Product: (Optional) For study watchlists, to watch Cases associated with a specific study product, select the Study Product.
      To enable this field, you must first select the Study.
    • Product: (Optional) To monitor Cases associated with a marketed product, select the Product. If you select a Combination Product, the system automatically monitors Cases containing its Product Constituents. A Case Product must link to this product with a Drug Role of Suspect or Interacting to trigger a watchlist.

      Note Specifying a Product or Study is optional. If you choose to specify one of these fields, note that you cannot complete the other. Otherwise, the Watchlist can not run.

    • MedDRA Version: Select the MedDRA version to use when adding MedDRA terms to the watchlist.
    • Watchlist Exclusions: (Optional) Select Clinical trial studies from the picklist to exclude Cases with the Study Type field set to Clinical Trial (clinical_trial__v) from the Watchlist.

      Note Exclusions may be applied only when Watchlists do not specify a Study or Product.

  4. Select Save.

Add Updates to Case Fields

Configure your watchlist to automatically set the Expedited and Seriousness values for Cases with matching adverse events.

  1. On the Watchlist page to which you want to edit, expand Updates to Case Fields.
  2. On the Updates to Case Fields section, complete the following fields:
    • Expedited: To expedite the reporting timeline for Cases that match this watchlist, select Yes.
      If you enable this option, Cases will be expedited regardless of expectedness or causality.
    • Default Seriousness: Select the Seriousness criteria.
  3. Select Save.


Any Cases matching the watchlist criteria will be automatically assigned the set Expedited and Seriousness value. For example, an Inbox Item with a matching adverse event will be assigned these values by the watchlist upon Case promotion.

Note If the Inbox Item being promoted already has a specified Seriousness field, the watchlist will not update it upon Case promotion.

Add MedDRA Terms

Configure individual adverse event terms for the watchlist.

Adverse events can be added to Watchlists at any level of the MedDRA hierarchy. When Case Processors code adverse events on Cases, any MedDRA LLT is considered a match if it is listed on or falls under the hierarchy of the term on the Watchlist. For example, if the Watchlist includes the HLGT “Allergic conditions” as an adverse event, then the Case-level LLT “Drug-cross-reactivity” would fall under the Watchlist-coded HLGT term and a Watchlist tag would be added to the Case Adverse Event.

  1. Go to the Watchlist record.
  2. Under MedDRA Terms, select Create.
  3. In the Create Watchlist Criteria window, complete the fields.
  4. Select Save.
  5. Repeat for any other applicable MedDRA terms.


Your Watchlist is now configured to watch the specified adverse events. Inbox Items with matching adverse events will be updated with the criteria set in the Watchlist (Watchlist Tag, Seriousness, Expedited) upon being promoted to a Case.

Watchlist Criteria Fields

Field Description
MedDRA Term Enter a search term for any level of the MedDRA hierarchy and then select Auto-code or the Advanced Search (binoculars-icon) icon to search in the MedDRA Browser.

Note To use a term during aggregate reporting, terms must be added at the PT or LLT level.


When you select Auto-code, the system attempts to match the term to the least specific level of the hierarchy, searching in priority order of SOC, HLGT, HLT, PT, and then LLT.

When the system finds an exact match, the term is populated in the field. Below the field, the matched term and level appear in bold and any less specific hierarchical levels are listed below.

All levels of the MedDRA hierarchy displayed in Edit mode
All levels of the MedDRA hierarchy displayed in Edit mode

If the system does not find an exact match, a notification appears. You can enter a different search term to auto-code or search using the MedDRA Browser. If you have entered a term in the MedDRA Term field, it appears in the MedDRA Browser Search bar.

Advanced Search

To search for a term using the MedDRA Browser, complete the following steps:

  1. To the left of the Search bar, select the MedDRA hierarchy level you want to search.
  2. In the Search bar, enter the search term.
  3. (Optional) To filter the MedDRA Browser to show only terms that are part of a primary system organ class, select the Only Primary SOC checkbox.
  4. Select the Search (binoculars-icon) icon to initiate the search.
    The search results are displayed based on the hierarchy level selected in step 1. There is a 1,000 search result limit in the browser.
  5. To code a MedDRA term, select the term and then select Confirm.


The term is populated in the field. Below the field, the matched term and level appear in bold and all of the less specific hierarchical levels are listed below.

Note When you hover over the hovercard for the MedDRA Term, the Primary SOC is listed only if the field is coded at the LLT or PT level. The Primary SOC is not listed if the field is coded at the HLT, HLGT, or SOC level of the hierarchy.

Include Lower Levels

This field is no longer used for Watchlists. Previously, it was used to indicate a term was at the PT level. Terms at any level can now be added to Watchlist MedDRA Criteria.

This field may be hidden by your Admin.

MedDRA Condition

We recommend that your Admin removes this field from the Watchlist Criteria page layout. The system does not consider this field when determining whether a Case Adverse Event should be tagged.

If using this field for reference only, enter the name of the medical condition or indication to which the adverse event applies and then select Auto-code or the Advanced Search (binoculars-icon) icon to select the MedDRA term from the MedDRA Browser.

Description (Optional) Enter a description for the watchlist term.

Add Watchlist MedDRA Queries (MedDRA Query Building Blocks)

MedDRA Query Building Blocks offer a way to combine existing Standard MedDRA Queries (SMQs), hierarchical MedDRA terms, and Custom MedDRA Queries (CMQs) in a MedDRA Query record. The MedDRA Query with the Building Blocks can then be applied to multiple Datasheets and Watchlists, and all of the MedDRA Terms within the Building Blocks are added to those records. Admins control when to push MedDRA Query record changes to all Datasheets and Watchlists using it.

Add each MedDRA Query record under the Watchlist.

  1. Go to the Watchlist record page.
    Find Watchlists on the Business Admin > Objects > Watchlists page.
  2. Under MedDRA Queries, select Create and then complete the following fields:
    Field Description
    MedDRA Query Select a MedDRA Query record from the dropdown list.
    Scope Select whether the terms in the MedDRA Query record are Narrow, Broad, or both. Select Narrow or Broad to pull in values with the corresponding scope applied on the SMQ or CMQ term. Leave blank to pull in all values.
  3. Select Save.

    Tip Select Save + Create to add another MedDRA Query record to your Watchlist.

  4. In the All Actions menu, select Update from MedDRA Queries.


All of the MedDRA LLTs that fall under the MedDRA Query record are listed in the MedDRA Terms section.

Add Watchlist Tags

By default, Vault Safety includes two Watchlist Tags: DME and AESI.

To add custom Watchlist Tags, configure the Watchlist Tags picklist to add new options. Vault Help provides more information about configuring picklists.

Watchlist Questionnaires

After configuring a Watchlist, you can configure Watchlist questionnaires to allow Case processors to quickly send an automated email to case reporters for follow-up information. You can set up the questionnaire for the entire Watchlist or for specific MedDRA Terms within a Watchlist. Set Up Scheduled Follow-Up Questionnaire Emails provides more information.

Configure Email to Vault Safety Inbox Item
Manage Datasheets and Auto-Expectedness