Opinion Factsheet  

A pharmaceutical strategy for Europe and legislative proposal for changing the mandate of the European Medicines Agency (EMA)

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Opinion Number: CDR 5525/2020
Rapporteur: SACRÉDEUS Birgitta
Commission: NAT
Status: Adopted
Date: 07/05/2021
 
to draw attention to the critical role played by the local and regional levels in countries' crisis preparedness and to the need to involve them in framing measures to strengthen security of supply of medicines and reduce vulnerability
to consider the objectives and the flagship initiatives of the pharmaceutical strategy from the local/regional point of view as the healthcare systems are decentralised to varying degrees in 19 of the 27 Member States and local and regional authorities are also involved in funding healthcare in many Member States
to ensure that the legal framework for the future European Health Union recognises local and regional authorities' responsibility for public health and builds on lessons learned from crises at the levels of governance closest to ordinary people
to consider whether the practical facilities are there for Member States to provide the EMA with the information requested, and whether the proposal creates excessive red tape for Member States and the healthcare system
In March, the rapporteur spoke at an online conference "The role of regions and cities in supporting apprenticeships: upskilling and reskilling in the health sector", organised by the CoR and the European Commission. The event focused on the role of cities and regions in supporting apprenticeships in the health sector and explored local and regional initiatives for training, upskilling and reskilling health workers, taking into account the future skill needs of the sector. The rapporteur suggested that the Covid-19 pandemic had led to a significant increase in the number of people interested in becoming a nurse. During the pandemic, the region of Dalarna developed successful lifelong learning initiatives for older workers, and offered reskilling programmes (for flight attendants, for example) allowing workers to become nursing assistants. She also pointed out that, more broadly, the health sector serves as an efficient gateway into the labour market and holds untapped potential as an integration tool for migrants.

The rapporteur also participated at the EESC hearing on 'Building a European Health Union', at the invitation of Mr. Ioannis Vardakastanis, rapporteur of the EESC opinion, presenting CoR views and standpoints on the subject.