Advocacy plays a vital role in highlighting the needs and protecting the rights of patients with allergy and respiratory disease. Without advocating at the EU, these diseases threaten society with increasing costs and can reduce the standards of living and number of healthy working years for children and adults across Europe. A common concern among patients is that these diseases are not regarded as being as important as other chronic diseases in public opinion and among policymakers. Unfortunately, this view leads to ignorance of these disease areas and subsequently negatively affects patients, causing an increasingly serious problem over time. As a federation advocating on behalf of these disease areas and their patients, EFA aims to raise the profile of allergy and airways diseases and to highlight them as serious disease areas among the public.
EFA provides you with patient perspective.
An important part of policymaking is connecting decisions made by government with real people and the results of these decisions in their everyday lives. The relationship between European policy and European citizens becomes even more important, given the complex procedures and emphasis on implementation of EU policy at the national level. EFA acts as a liaison between people with allergy, asthma and COPD and the EU policymakers, providing patient perspective within policies. This role is twofold, as EFA both educates policymakers on patient experiences and best practice models on care, prevention and patient participation at the national level, while keeping patients updated on developments at EU level.
In addition, EFA negotiates to raise the standards of care, environment and research by organising events and meetings with representatives of the EU institutions. The EFA secretariat and board members are primary points of contact for policymakers in Brussels, but the EFA members themselves are encouraged to maintain close contact with key decision makers in healthcare policy in their own countries.
Empower patients with us.
The creation and continuation of mutually beneficial and sustainable partnerships is vital to the achievement of EFA’s objectives. EFA develops and promotes long-term partnerships with healthcare professionals, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), the scientific research community and industry. Strong partnerships provide resources and allow for the distribution of workloads, while increasing the impact of work performed and building upon the successes of EU policy advocacy towards achieving major initiatives. With the concrete EFA EU policy goal of ‘European dedicated programs and/or plans for allergy, asthma and COPD’, maintaining well-defined conditions for partnership increases the effectiveness of these partnerships as an invaluable precondition for success.
In addition to our sustainable industry partnerships, EFA also enjoys partnerships with a variety of other organisations with expertise in a range of areas. You can view a list of our partners and links to their homepages below:
EFA partners with:
Make your voice heard.
In originally brainstorming this portion, which is still in our preliminary sitemap, we thought it would be useful to include mini-portals to link patients directly to EFA members. I am not sure if by design this is feasible considering how many links this would entail, as you have seen previously. We have also discussed the potential for the provision of translations of this particular space into each EFA Member language, but again, we are not sure of the feasibility of this or whether Google translate could be useful for
such a task. Lastly, we had indicated providing the disease areas here as additional content for such translation, but I think this would be redundant if we already have other sections dedicated to these areas.
Our job is to make your voice heard and to do that we need to hear from you. If you are a European with asthma, allergy or COPD , your feedback is crucial to enable us to accurately reflect the perspectives of patients and we would greatly welcome your participation in our public forum. Your feedback can help to stimulate new discussions and inspire creative approaches which will aid us in our efforts to resolve some of the most complex problems confronting you on a monthly, or even daily basis.
We aid in achieving similar aims and objectives throughout Europe
At present, there are 35 EFA Members, representing 22 European countries and over 400,000 allergy, asthma and COPD patients living in Europe. EFA membership is an opportunity for European patient associations for allergy and respiratory diseases to work together. Policy updates and participation in EU-funded projects enables EFA to provide valuable information to patient associations across Europe and create opportunities for them to interact with and understand European health policy. EFA collaborates with member associations in advocacy work, campaigns, working groups and projects.
Become a member of the EFA family.
If you share our aim of broadening our understanding of allergy and airways diseases and advocating on behalf of patients, we would be delighted to welcome you to EFA. The central principles for EFA Membership are based upon the core values of the EFA organisation, which focus on democracy, legitimacy, transparency and accountability. EFA members pay a €500 annual membership fee, which grants voting rights for each respective patient association at the Annual General Meeting (AGM). Federations or coalitions of patient associations only receive one vote if they pay the standard membership fee.
EFA is happy to accept applications from any European patient association with specialisation in allergy, asthma or COPD which demonstrates interest in joining in a cover letter explaining any limitations which could potentially prevent them from joining EFA. The EFA Board reviews all applications and then decides whether or not to include applicants as participants at the AGM, where the EFA members view the application and vote on their inclusion.
To apply for EFA membership, please fill in EFA Membership Application