What the Commission is doing
The European Commission and EU countries are working together to build a strong European Health Union, which protects the health of Europeans, improves the resilience of Europe’s health systems and ensures that the EU and its Member States are prepared to address shared challenges. The EU is active in many different areas, such as improving vaccine confidence, ensuring all citizens have access to the medicines and medical devices they need at an affordable price, reducing the burden of cancer, and other leading non-communicable diseases, and reaping the benefits of digitalisation for healthcare and services.
There are also initiatives to reduce the use of antibiotics, improve the health technology assessment framework as well as crisis response and preparedness, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control assesses emerging threats so that the EU and national health authorities can respond rapidly.
To protect citizens and ensure they get the best treatment, all medicines in the EU must be approved at national or EU level, through the European Medicines Agency, before going on the market.
The European Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Authority (HERA) develops, produces and procures medical countermeasures before and during a health crisis.
- strengthening coordination at EU-level when facing cross-border health threats
- promoting the accessibility and availability of medicines through the EU Pharmaceutical Strategy
- maximising the potential of digital health opportunities through the creation of a European Health Data Space
- preventing cancer and ensuring that cancer patients, survivors, their families and carers can enjoy a high quality of life through Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan
- improving vaccine confidence and supporting EU countries to increase the uptake of vaccines
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