How to use the European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF) for health?

Good health is vital to ensure the well-being and employability of the EU population, which is essential for economic growth and to maintain the EU’s high level of social protection.

The EU supports investments in public health and healthcare through the 2014-2020 European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF).

Health projects eligible for ESIF funding

The Commission has published a Guidepdf(2 MB) for Member States and potential beneficiaries on the areas ESIF 2014-2020 can support in the health sector:

  • Research and innovation in health, support to SMEs, e-health
  • Health promotion, active and healthy ageing, health at the workplace
  • Access to healthcare, addressing health inequalities, mental health
  • Transition from institution-based care to community-based care, including infrastructure and equipment investments
  • Healthcare systems’ capacities and reform for effective and sustainable care
  • Health workforce, health professionals’ education and lifelong training
  • Cross-border healthcare and cooperation between Member States and regions

Who manages ESIF?

EU Member States and the European Commission (DG REGIO - Regional and Urban Policy and DG EMPL - Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion) are co-managers of the structural funds.

The Commission DG SANTE (Health and Food Safety) works closely with DG REGIO and DG EMPL on the use of ESIF for health investments.

The European Commission coordinates the funding modalities and thematic priorities with the Member States, which are then responsible for implementation of the investments at national level.

2014-2020 ESIF funding priorities

Country funding priorities, for the period 2014-2020, have been defined in Partnership Agreements. Planned actions are then presented in Operational Programmes by sector and, where relevant, by region.

Type of investment and priorities are summarized in (non-exhaustive) country info-sheets.

Learn on the use of structural funds for health in the period 2007-2013.

How to apply?

Member States, through delegated Managing Authorities, are responsible for the allocation and implementation of ESIF at the national level.

Beneficiaries from ESIF include public bodies, private sector organisations (especially small businesses), universities, NGOs and associations.

Potential beneficiaries should:

  • Consult the calls for proposals published by the Managing Authority(ies) of the country of interest
  • Send an application directly to the concerned Managing Authority.