28 March 2013
- Air Quality, - Tobacco & Smoking, - Healthcare, - Medicines

The European Health Report 2012

The European Health report 2012 describing the overall improvements in health in the WHO European region has now been made available on-line. The general report, published every three years, aims to support and provide the evidence base for the strategic objectives and priorities of Health 2020, the new European policy framework to support actions across government and society for health and wellbeing, endorsed in 2012 by European Member States. Providing policy-makers and public health professionals with epidemiological evidence base, the report also outlines the tools and methods to measure progress in health. Special attention is paid to well-being, one of the pivotal aspects of Health 2020 which has served as a marker of progress in health in the region. To access the report, please click here.  

HealthVent Guidelines – policy recommendations on ventilation

Ventilation guidelines for non-industrial buildings were developed between 2010 and 2013 as the main objective of the HealthVent project in which EFA partners. The first results of the project, presented on February 20, 2013 in the EP at the event “Indoor Air Quality and its Effects on Health: a Presentation of the Guidelines for Health-Based Ventilation in Europe”, lay down a set of concrete policy actions to be taken in order to improve quality of indoor air:

1)      both indoor and outdoor pollution should be tackled and WHO guidelines enforced;

2)      tobacco smoking should be banned in all public places;

3)      green paper on IAQ should be urgently prepared by the European Commission;

4)      the currently developed 7th EAP should put more emphasis on air quality and provide the basis for further action on IAQ by 2020;

5)      coordinated actions should be launched towards  both outdoor and indoor air on the principle that it is the “same air” that affects human health.

The report of the event has now been published and is available here.  

Legislative texts round-up

Clinical trials: 

The proposed revision of the clinical trials regulation was discussed in the European Parliament in the committee responsible for the dossier (ENVI), as well as for the second opinion (IMCO). In April, the ENVI committee will vote on the report of the file’s rapporteur, MEP Glenis Willmott. EFA is supporting the European Patients Forum (EPF) position statement on this issue, emphasising the need to ensure that patients involvement is strengthened and their safety guaranteed.

Medical devices:

EFA has also kept on following the medical devices regulation, which was discussed in March at the ENVI and IMCO committee of the European Parliament. We are monitoring this topic very closely to ensure that patients’ safety and involvement are enhanced and transparency strengthened. As a next step, EFA will thus analyse the report prepared by MEPs and propose amendments. Click here for more information on the dossier.

Seventh environment action programme:

In collaboration with the Health and Environment Alliance (HEAL), EFA has carried on working on theCommission’s proposal for a seventh environment action programme. The proposal was discussed at the ENVI committee of the European Parliament in March and is going to be voted on at the committee in April. EFA has been in contact with responsible MEPs to strengthen the proposal in terms of air pollution and climate change provisions and to guarantee that people with asthma, allergy and COPD have the best quality of life possible.

Tobacco products directive:

Together with other NGOs active in the field of tobacco control, EFA has been advocating for a strengthened directive to prevent young people from starting to smoke, help smokers to quit and in general safeguard the health of European citizens. EFA has also been monitoring the discussion on the proposal for a revision of the tobacco products directive in the ENVI committee (responsible for the file) and in the IMCO (responsible for an opinion on the file) in the European Parliament. Click here for more information on the dossier.

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The EFA Team