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Coordination across the borders to respond to health crises

on Thu, 11/07/2013 - 13:56

Another step towards a better European coordination against health crises: the Decision on Serious Cross-border Threats to Health, approved in July by the European Parliament, has finally entered into force on November 6th. Driven by the motto “Hope for the best, and be prepared for the worst”, the Decision recognizes the need for a common approach on preparedness planning together with risk and crisis response, and will enforce coordination between all Member States.

Aim of the Decision is to cover all the aspects involved – namely: preparedness planning, risk assessment, risk management and risk communication – when facing cross-border threats to health. This will require a central role for the European Commission to coordinate public health measures, not limited to the mere legal mandate that it had before this approval. The new Decision extends the Commission's co-ordination role to all types of health crises – biological, chemical, environmental, or of an unknown nature.

More information on the Decision on Serious Cross-border Threats to Health can be found in the FAQ released by the European Commission.