Crisis preparedness and response

Joint Procurement of medical countermeasures

The outbreak in 2009 of H1N1 pandemic influenza highlighted weaknesses in the access and purchasing power of EU countries to obtain pandemic vaccines and medications. In 2010, the European Council requested the Commission to start the preparation of joint procurement of vaccines in the frame of a future pandemic.

Provisions for the joint procurement of medical countermeasures are included in Article 5 of Decision 1082/2013/EU on serious cross-border threats to health. The Joint Procurement Agreement (JPA) was approved by the Commission on 10 April 2014, and as of September 2017 has been signed by 24 EU countries. The JPA:

  • Determines the practical arrangements governing the mechanism
  • Defines the decision-making process with regard to the choice of the procedures
  • Organises the assessment of the tenders and the award of the contract

Ensuring proper preparedness

The aim of the joint procurement mechanism is to secure more equitable access to specific medical countermeasures and an improved security of supply, together with more balanced prices for the participating EU countries.

In order to be adequately prepared for an outbreak of a serious cross-border threat to health, the institutions of the EU, together with countries that have joined the JPA, may engage in a joint procurement procedure with a view to purchase:

  • Vaccines
  • Antivirals
  • Medical countermeasures for serious cross-border threats to health

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