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EPHA reaction on European Parliament vote for patient’s rights

The European Parliament voted to adopt a report that will give patients the possibility to travel throughout Europe in order to receive healthcare. The vote, passed on the 24th April, builds on over ten years of rulings from the European Court of Justice, the Directive is now closer to realisation following adoption of the report by 297 votes for, 120 against and 152 abstention.

Founding HEAL member, The European Public Health Alliance (EPHA) has broadly supported the proposed Directive since it was first drafted by the European Commission in July 2008. Nevertheless, EPHA has been carefully monitoring the developments, striving to ensure that the Directive answers the needs of all patients. EPHA supports the vision of rapporteur John Bowis MEP for a Directive that addresses patients with needs and not only patients with means.

"The public health community is satisfied that this proposed Directive has made it through a first reading and that the Parliament has shown such a strong lead on it. We hope that the Member States will show a similar commitment to European patients within the Council proceedings," said Monika Kosinska, Secretary General of EPHA. "Mr Bowis’ work has been commendable and EPHA, while harbouring a few reservations, is extremely happy with the efforts of the Parliament."

One of EPHA’s key reservations is the lack of ambition to further facilitate access to cross-border healthcare for under-privileged patients, noticeably better guarantees of reimbursement for healthcare.

For further information, please visit the EPHA website

Last updated on 1 July 2011

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