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H1N1 Influenza: more cooperation needed by health authorities. Anne Delvaux MEP


25 Jan 2011


Health & Consumers

The European Parliament's Environment, Public Health and Food Safety Committee (ENVI) adopted a Report today on the management of the outbreak of H1N1 infuenza in 2009-2010.

According to Anne Delvaux MEP, Shadow Rapporteur for the EPP Group, the Report, adopted with a large majority (58 in favour, 2 abstentions) highlights important concerns in terms of cooperation by the Member States, independence of the health authorities and transparancy.

Anne Delvaux said: "The Member States reacted in a largely individual manner instead of cooperating, but the virus had, of course, no territorial boundaries. In the interest of all Europeans we need to learn lessons from the way H1N1 was managed so as to better deal with any future pandemic risks."

According to Anne Delvaux, the most important measures to be taken are:

      better cooperation and coordination between the Member States' health authorities and the European institutions;
      a new definition by the World Health Organisation of its criteria to invoke a global pandemic alert, taking into account not only the geographical spread of the disease, but also its virulence;
      an evaluation of the Member States' strategies to stock up on vaccinations;
      the joint purchasing of vaccinations by the Member States;
      the publication of the names of all the experts that advised the European health authorities so as to avoid conflicts of interest;
      complete transparency of the medical products used in case of a medical and pandemic urgency.

On 9 February, Anne Delvaux will chair an EPP Group Hearing to discuss the lessons to be drawn from the H1N1 influenza pandemic (15.00-18.30 hrs, Room JAN 6Q1, European Parliament). Representatives of the Belgian, French, Polish and Hungarian Ministries of Health will participate.

For further information:
Anne DELVAUX MEP, Tel: +32-2-2837154
Greet Gysen, EPP Group Press & Communications Service, Tel: +32-497-028054

Note to Editors:
The EPP Group is by far the largest political group in the European Parliament with 265 Members.


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