EU Commission aspires for treaty change on health

Sallie Anderson

The European Commission is hoping for a treaty change so that it has more state on health.

“If the moment is right, it will happen,” Margaritis Schinas, the vice-president of the European Commission, informed press reporters on Thursday (28 May).

“Nothing is off the table,” he added, keeping in mind that a dispute will happen at the Conference on the Future of Europe, which is set to define the Union’s top priorities over the next 2 years.

“I am not now in a position to announce how this health union of the European Union will look like in the future but I think we are now at the first stage of a process that one day will make this a tangible reality,” he stated.

Schinas’ remarks follows comparable current declarations by French president Emmanuel Macron and German chancellor Angela Merkel.

Both leaders previously this month in a joint interview stimulated the concept of a European Union much better prepared to take on significant health problems like the pandemic.

That political signal appears to have actually likewise pushed the European Commission in its higher goals for more power over health.

The European Commission’s skills on health are currently limited. The treaty states it can just “complement national policies” and “encourage cooperation”.

Nevertheless, the Covid-19 pandemic revealed member states were unprepared. Some closed down borders, all rushed for medical products, and others even hoarded equipment indicated for other EU states.

The absence of uniformity alarmed critics, amongst them the former European Commission president Jaques Delors. In March, he explained it as a mortal danger for the European Union.

EU4Health – a first action

The European Commission has actually considering that proposed to fortify a brand-new EUR750 bn recovery plan in the hopes of beginning battered economies.

Part of that strategy now consists of a brand-new stand alone EUR9.4 bn program devoted tohealth The figure is 23 times greater than existing EU budget lines devoted to health.

Called the EU4Health program, the proposition likewise provided on Thursday, is being explained by the Commission as “a game changer, a real paradigm shift” on how the EU handles health.

“This crisis made it clear that our collective response capacity needs to be brought and raised to a different level,” stated Stella Kyriakides, the European Commissioner for health and food safety.

EU4Health would run till 2027 and intends to produce long term stockpiles and reserves for medicalequipment


It likewise wishes to produce a swimming pool of “flying” medical professionals that can be sent out to locations of need.

The European Medicines Company and the European Centre for Illness Control (ECDC) likewise advantage. When it comes to vaccines and security, both firms would have more powers.

“In terms of the ECDC we need to look how we can improve preparedness plans and surveillance,” stated Kyriakides.

The Stockholm-based ECDC was criticised for at first painting a rosy photo of the dangers connected to the pandemic.

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