Cohesion policy action against coronavirus

EU cohesion policy contributes to the fight against coronavirus with numerous projects all over Europe. Project beneficiaries have quickly reacted to the sanitary and socio-economic emergency situation using cohesion policy funds to adjust their resources and/or propose solutions. This section displays news and video testimonials on cohesion policy projects related to COVID-19.


COVID-19 crisis & EU solidarity Stories from the Regions

Thanks to the financial support of Interreg POCTEFA programme, the “EGALURG” project is a true example of innovation and mobilisation to serve people beyond borders. This is a mobile hospital which was deployed in autumn 2020 at the border between France and Spain to give response to the higher demand of health care services as result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The goal of the project, which was conceived in pre-coronavirus time, is to create an operational network for cross-border cooperation in emergency and disaster medicine to allow equal access to emergency care for the populations. Considering that the geographic features along the French and Spanish border make land communication between the two countries more difficult and can also limit access to emergency care for the people who live in these areas, the "mobile hospital" was originally intended to be deployed in the event of disasters causing many injuries, such as terrorist attacks or natural disasters.

Cooperation and volunteering projects co-financed by INTERREG European funds in the outermost regions health sector have not stopped despite the difficulties linked to the COVID crisis and the lockdown. While continuing their activities remotely, operators in the field were able to support their projects, to reinforce healthcare and medical expertise, to share experiences.
Thanks to the solidarity and the support from the EU, cooperation between the islands adapts to the context, is strengthened and proves to be very useful in meeting the needs of distant territories.
Important note: This episode was made during the first wave of the pandemic and the first lockdown, in the spring of 2020.

CoNVat is an EU project that is about direct, fast and specific identification of coronavirus to improve its early diagnosis and the clinical management of patients. The approach employs an already developed technology based on nanophotonic bimodal waveguide (BiMW) interferometers capable of providing real time, highly sensitive detections assays in short sample turnaround times. Final prototype validation will demonstrate the potential of this approach for the management of future infectious outbreaks.

Strengthening the epidemiological and virological surveillance of COVID-19 will be key to defeating the disease.In addition to bringing together case data from hospitals and other primary care clinics, the project will also study the effectiveness of any future vaccines or treatments for the virus. The goal is to obtain as much information as possible about COVID-19, and to make sure the same methodology is practised among the partners and participating countries. The first step takes place in clinics or doctors surgeries where a case might be diagnosed.

“The Good Support Program” is a EU cohesion policy project in Poland which develops remote management of care services. At time of COVID-19, this project beneficiary has decided to provide their innovative IT tool for free for the duration of the crisis, to help other European communities fighting the coronavirus emergency. The value of this project was already awarded by the European Commission with the title of RegioStars 2019 for the most innovative IT tool in social services.

This project is even more valuable in the current context of COVID-19 spread as citizens can benefit from tele-medicine and two nurses who are helping on the ground in hospitals and patients’ home.

The MISMI project financed by EU cohesion policy supports people living in mountain, rural and dispersedly populated areas between Valle d’Aosta region in Italy and Tarentaise in France. The project is about linking people in need with caregivers and the community using technology, thus contributing to fight people’s isolation and social and health inequalities.

This project is even more valuable in the current context of COVID-19 spread as citizens can benefit from tele-medicine and two nurses who are helping on the ground in hospitals and patients’ home.

The TRAKK Fab lab in the city of Namur, Belgium, turned very quickly all its efforts towards the fight against the epidemic. Today, thanks to the participation of European regional funds, they manage to produce and distribute 30,000 protective visors. In partnership with other companies in the region, they are currently designing a prototype syringe pump that would be freely accessible to everyone.

The Cerdanya hospital– funded by Interreg – and located at the border between Spain and France is getting prepared to treat patients with COVID-19 from both sides of the border. They even have an agreement similar to the “green lanes” with the frontier police to let the patients freely cross the border.

SHG-Kliniken Voelklingen is a hospital based in Germany, in the cross-border area of the Greater region close to Belgium, France, and Luxembourg. The hospital is admitting COVID-19 patients from France who need critical support. The hospital is a beneficiary of several EU supported Interreg cross-border cooperation projects, like SANTRANSFOR and COSAN.

The Luxembourg Hospital Federation (FHL) currently counts 10 members, Luxembourg-based hospitals and specialised clinics. In the face of COVID-19 crisis, the FHL mobilised its members to receive patients from France and the Greater Region.

The FILA project (IPA-CBC Italy-Albania-Montenegro) aims to enhance SMEs competitiveness and cross border cooperation through the creation of ‘Fertilization and Innovation Labs in Agro-food’ (FILA Labs). In the face of the pandemic, one of the partners in the project – the Innovation and entrepreneurship center TECHNOPOLIS - quickly adapted and started using its 3D printer to produce protective equipment – visors – for essential medical and economic staff.
Project web site