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Issue 130, 22 May 2014


Your gateway to trustworthy information on public health

New Tobacco Products Directive: an achievement for public health in Europe

by Tonio Borg, European Commissioner for Health

by Tonio Borg, European Commissioner for Health

Every year, 700 000 Europeans die from smoking-related causes. The Tobacco Products Directive, which was published on 29 April 2014 and will enter into force on 19 May 2014, is therefore an achievement for EU public health policy. By ensuring tobacco products on the EU market look and taste like tobacco products, the new harmonised rules on tobacco and related products will help reduce the number of people who start smoking in the EU – especially the young.   With 70% of smokers in Europe starting before the age of 18 and 94% before the age of 25, the ban on characterising flavours, such as fruit or menthol, whi [...]

In this edition

News from the EU » 
Forthcoming events » 
EU Press Releases » 
New publications » 
Reporting from across Europe » 
  Previous editions
  Suggest news and events
  Send to a friend

Read the full focus of this edition  »

Also in this focus

Health Programme Projects »

European Network for Smoking and Tobacco Prevention

Families and Adolescents Quit Tobacco

EU Health Prize for Journalists – Articles »

"Tumours and decaying teeth on cigarette packaging", by Mariana Todorova, 2012 finalist from Bulgaria in the Smoking Cessation category

"I have come here to have my teeth treated, and not to quit smoking!" by Monika Cetera , finalist from Poland and 2011 Winner of the special prize in the Smoking Cessation category

"Cigarettes – 600 dangerous additives," by Marianna Castelluccio, 2011 finalist from Italy in the Smoking Cessation category

"The long shadows of the anti-smoking therapies," by Aser Garcia Rada, 2011 finalist from Spain in the Smoking Cessation category

Read all the articles in the Smoking Cessation category: 2012 Prize

Read all the articles in the Smoking Cessation category: 2011 Prize »


News from the EU 

Health Security Committee advises travellers on Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus  »

The Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus MERS-CoV poses a threat to public health in the Arabian Peninsula: the European Commission and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) are carefully monitoring the situation.

Updated Scientific Opinion on breast health and implants adopted  »

The Commission’s independent Scientific Committee on Emerging and Newly Identified Health Risks has adopted an update to its 2012 opinion on the safety of Poly Implant Prothèse (PIP) Silicone Breast Implants. Read the Opinion in full here.

Commissioner Tonio Borg speaks to patients on European Patients’ Rights Day  »

The Commissioner voiced his commitment to upholding the "patient-centred principles enshrined in the EU Treaty and the Charter of Fundamental Rights," and said that the 12 May occasion reminded policy makers to keep patients at the heart of their decisions.

European Patients' Rights Day: 10 benefits the EU brings to patients  »

On the occasion of European Patients' Rights Day, the European Commission took a look at some of the benefits of being a patient in the European Union. Read what you can expect as an EU citizen.

EU and US make progress in the joint fight against antimicrobial resistance  »

The European Commission and the US Department of Health and Human Services have published the first progress report of the Transatlantic Taskforce on Antimicrobial Resistance. The report outlines advances made against antimicrobial resistance.

European Medicines Agency presents its first report to the Commission  »

The report on the agency's first year of monitoring the safety of medicines is positive, showing better collection of information on medicines, improved analysis and understanding of data and info, improved timeliness of procedures and greater transparency.

"Know your Air for Health" website provides air quality info and alerts  »

The joint-project website posts information and alerts primarily for vulnerable groups such as pregnant women, children, patients and the elderly who are most affected by air pollution. It also encourages people to take a stance and work toward improving air quality.

Public consultation on Varicella vaccination in the EU still open  »

A public consultation launched by European Centre for Disease Control and Prevention on the preliminary guidance report “Varicella vaccination in the European Union” remains open through 23 May. Read the Preliminary Guidance here too.

New edition of EuroHealthNet magazine available online  »

EuroHealthNet explains its projects, objectives and working methods in this online publication. This edition features the work of network members from Italy, Slovenia, Latvia and Germany and updates on EU policies and activities carried out by EuroHealthNet.

Forthcoming events 

International congress on Human Milk (Nantes, France, 6 June 2014)  »

This international congress examines the recent scientific progress on human milk and its use for preterm infants and is being organized by INRA Science and Impact at the University of Nantes.

Frailty in old age conference (Brussels, 18 June 2014)  »

European Commission is organising a second international conference on frailty in old age, with a focus on “Frailty in old age: identifying priorities for an EU policy”.

EU Press Releases 

Robin the robot helps take care of 94-year-old Italian Grandma Lea  »

An EU-funded team has developed the GiraffPlus system; a robot assists older people in their homes, connects them to family, friends and healthcare professionals, while wearable devices and sensors in the home monitor the person's health and activities.

Questions and Answers: Fees for Pharmacovigilance activities  »

This Memo by the European Commission seeks to explain the meaning and importance of pharmacovigilance in the EU and why new legislation on fees payable to the European Medicines Agency was deemed necessary.

World Day of Safety and Health at Work prompts closer collaboration  »

The European Commission and the International Labour Organization agreed to reinforce cooperation to reduce the toll of accidents and illness at work. Every 15 seconds a worker dies from a work-related accident or disease and 160 workers have a work-related accident.

New publications 

FARSEEING project publishes first results  »

FARSEEING collects data about real-life falls of older adults, in order to better understand the risk factors for falls. Based on this, solutions are developed to prevent older adults from falling. The project also encourages seniors to make use of available technology.

Reporting from across Europe 

Croatia leads in liver and kidney transplants  [Croatia]  »

The Croatian Ministry of Health reports that according to 2011 data Croatia leads the world in the number of liver and kidney transplants per million inhabitants and also has one of the shortest waiting lists for organs.

Swedish initiative to improve care for ill elderly people has reaped benefits  [Sweden]  »

The Swedish Government recently presented the results of its 2011-2014 initiative to improve health and social care for the most ill elderly people, and discussed how beneficial programmes started up through this effort can continue after 2014 comes to an end.

Poland provides training for EU Health Programme participation  [Poland]  »

Participants in the training course are gaining knowledge about financial and legal aspects of the EU Framework Programme Horizon 2020 and Third Programme of Action in the field of health , as well as about main requirements for applying for funding.

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