European Policy Agenda – What Can We Expect in 2022?

January 24, 2022
Policy News - Looking ahead to 2022!

The European Institutions announced in 2021 a series of initiatives in the field of health, particularly relating to the EU Beating Cancer Plan, that will shape DiCE policy initiatives in the next months.

European Parliament Adopts Final Proposal on Beating Cancer

In December, the European Parliament’s Special Committee on Beating Cancer adopted its final proposals on how to strengthen the EU’s role in the fight against cancer.

The Special Committee on Beating Cancer (BECA) highlighted key issues such as:

  • Facilitating access to cross-border health care and clinical trials for cancer patients
  • Extending the use of joint procurement procedures
  • Managing shortages of cancer medicines
  • Guaranteeing the ‘Right to be Forgotten’ as well as ensuring equal access to innovative cancer drugs and treatments

Please see this website for more details on the main calls for action.

From the European Commission

As per our policy update in November of last year the EU Health Commissioner Stella Kyriakides announced that the European Commission (EC) has published the implementation roadmap of Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan.

More specifically, the EC’s new cancer screening scheme aims to help EU countries ensure that 90% of the EU population who qualify for breast, cervical and colorectal cancer screenings are offered screening by 2025. The Commission will therefore update its 2003 guidance (Council Recommendation) on cancer screening based on the latest scientific advice and will consider extending screening to other types of cancer. This update is said to be available in February. DiCE is keeping a close eye on any advances in this area.

EC Work Programmes Update

The European Commission (EC) has published its work programmes for 2022. Work Programmes inform the public and co-legislators of the EC political commitments to presenting new initiatives, withdrawing pending proposals and reviewing existing EU legislation.

A key announcement in the report is the official confirmation that Operating Grants for health Non-Governmental Organisations (NGO’s) will be reinstated, as stated by the EC: “The Commission considers it important that there is continuity in the work carried out by the health NGOs in addressing current health challenges […] and it intends to award operating grants under this work programme to eligible NGOs. […] The objective is to ensure the participation of health NGOs in activities that are necessary to implement one or more specific objectives of the EU4Health Programme”.

The aim of operating grants is to provide support to the functioning of “certain NGOs for activities including awareness raising on various health aspects, communication and dissemination, capacity building and training, expert collaboration and networking”. Digestive Cancers Europe conducted a meeting with the EC on these grants in January, unfortunately we are ineligible due to certain criteria being unfulfilled. DiCE is continuing the dialogue with the EC, along with other European NGO’s, to see if these criteria can be changed.

Discover more about the EU4Health programme and the work programme.

Along with monitoring advances in these areas, DiCE will continue to represent our members at European level by taking part in key meetings and roundtables to bring the voice of our Members and the people they represent to the table and we will continue to identify key initiatives at EU level through our well established contacts with EU and international policy makers.

Would you like to know more? Please contact us.

Giulia Barenghi

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