Ewropej: European Health Union must revolve around patients’ needs

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by Cyrus Engerer, Maltese MEP

“It is time for a European Health Union that revolves around patients’ needs,” Member of the European Parliament Cyrus Engerer said. 

“The [Covid-19] pandemic was an eyeopener for all and citizens are demanding more cooperation between Member States on Health matters,” the Socialists and Democrats MEP said. 

“We must make medicines accessible and affordable to all those in need. In this sense, joint procurement at EU level will mean that all patients, even those coming from the smallest Member States, would have access to medicines and at the lowest possible prices,” he added. 

He proposed that the EU should also have its own hospitals in different European hubs that focus on different treatments, especially on rare diseases. One Member State alone might find difficulties to treat patients because of the low numbers but a joint effort between the 27 Member States could result in the best treatment, he said. 

Engerer added that the post-Covid recovery goals must be aligned with the Green Deal. “The Climate Law we agreed on is ambitious, yet it is imperative that Member States stick to the agreed objectives,” he said. 

He proposed switching to an energy mix which is made up of a higher proportion of renewable energy, as well as generating hydrogen from clean sources, while changing the way we travel within our countries and across the world. 

“For the Green Deal to be a truly pan-European success, the European Commission must ensure that all corners of the continent, including outermost regions and island states are connected to the rest of the European grid,” he concluded. 

This article is part of a content series called Ewropej. This is a multi-newsroom initiative part-funded by the European Parliament to bring the work of the EP closer to the citizens of Malta and keep them informed about matters that affect their daily lives. This article reflects only the author’s view. The European Parliament is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains.

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