Today the Commission adopted the Health Programme's Work Programme for 2018 (WP 2018) setting out the priorities and actions to be undertaken during that year. The overall budget for 2018 is just over €62 million, with 64% being allocated to grants, 24% to procurement and 12% to other actions including prizes.
The WP 2018 will focus on priority areas such as:
- Support to the European Reference Networks for rare and complex diseases (29% of the budget);
- The promotion of health and prevention of chronic and major diseases (15%);
- Strengthening preparedness and response to serious cross-border health threats (15%); and
- The implementation of EU legislation on medical devices (7%)
Vytenis Andriukaitis, Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, said "I welcome the adoption of the 2018 work programme of the Health Programme 2014-2020. Our budget is indeed relatively modest but I aim to support actions that deliver undisputed EU added value – such as connecting expertise on rare diseases and preparing a robust response in the event of a serious cross-border health threat. This can make a real difference to European citizens' health and wellbeing."
All grants for projects will be implemented through a call for proposals, organised and managed by the Consumer, Health, Agriculture and Food Executive Agency (CHAFEA) which will be launched in the first half of 2018.
With a total budget of close to € 450 million for 2014-2020, the Health Programme is the main financial instrument for policy coordination in the area of health and supports and complements Member States' efforts towards the achievement of major Commission priorities. This is done by pursuing the following four specific objectives:
- Objective 1: Promote health, prevent diseases, and foster supportive environments for healthy lifestyles.
- Objective 2: Protect citizens from serious cross-border health threats by identifying and developing coherent approaches and promoting their implementation for better preparedness and coordination in health emergencies.
- Objective 3: Support public health capacity building and contribute to innovative, efficient and sustainable health systems.
- Objective 4: Facilitate access to better and safer healthcare for EU citizens, by increasing access to medical expertise and information for specific conditions, also beyond national borders.