Visio-conférence des ministres européens de la santé
Une visio-conférence des ministres européens de la santé s’est tenue le 12 mai 2020.
Medicines need to be available in a timely manner across the EU at affordable price.
EU Health Ministers gathered virtually to discuss access to medicines and provide initial feedback for Pharmaceutical Strategy for Europe.
The Croatian Presidency convened today’s videoconference as a replacement of the informal meeting of EU Health Ministers, which was meant to be held in Zagreb. Dr Vera Katalinić-Janković, Assistant Minister of Health, chaired the meeting with the participation of Stella Kyriakides, Commissioner responsible for Health and Food Safety and Professor Guido Rasi, Executive Director of EMA (European Medicines Agency) as well as EFTA countries.
In her opening remarks, Commissioner Kyriakides highlighted universality and access, as two overarching goals to enable security of supply of medicines. Both Commissioner Kyriakides and Professor Rasi stressed the importance of early detection of shortages and increased production in the EU, in order to ensure the security of the supply of medicines on the internal market.
Ministers engaged in a substantive discussion on reliable and continuous access to medicines, also in view of COVID-19 pandemic that highlighted and worsened the existing problem with supply of important medicines in Europe. It was stressed that the spread of COVID-19 put an enormous strain on Members States’ healthcare system and that it is important to keep strengthening the cooperation between Member States and with the European Commission to ensure accessibility and affordability of medicines.
Moreover, Ministers exchanged views on the ongoing developmenet of the new Pharmaceutical Strategy for Europe and provided initial informal inputs for it. They focused on the link between the Pharmaceutical Strategy for Europe and Industrial Strategy which was published in March, and on the announced Economic Recovery Plan.
“Presidency sees this meeting as the continuation of work started in 2016 with the adoption of Conclusions on strengthening the balance in the Pharmaceutical Systems in the EU and its Member States, and in view of current circumstances as the beginning of reinforced joint work that will enable to improve the functioning of the European market for medicines in order to better cope with the challenges in the contemporary world.” Dr Vera Katalinić-Janković, Assistant Minister of Health
“The coronavirus pandemic has showed us more than ever that we need develop a new EU pharmaceutical strategy to ensure affordability, sustainability and security of supply. We need to establish the means to produce medicines within the EU and ensure that citizens and hospitals can have access to essential medicines at all times. We have a collective responsibility to put the patient at the centre, and I welcome today’s constructive discussion with Ministers." Stella Kyriakides, Commissioner responsible for Health and Food Safety
Finally, Ministers reflected on the possibility for strengthening the communication between national authorities and stakeholders, specifically in establishing an appropriate platform for regular dialogue for specific topics./.