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EU policies – Delivering for citizens: Health and social security

28-06-2019

While responsibility for health and social security lies primarily with the governments of the individual European Union (EU) Member States, the EU complements national policies, especially those with a cross-border dimension. In a recent poll conducted for the European Parliament, more than two thirds of EU citizens expressed support for increased EU action on health and social security. EU health policy aims to foster good health, protect citizens from health threats and support dynamic health ...

While responsibility for health and social security lies primarily with the governments of the individual European Union (EU) Member States, the EU complements national policies, especially those with a cross-border dimension. In a recent poll conducted for the European Parliament, more than two thirds of EU citizens expressed support for increased EU action on health and social security. EU health policy aims to foster good health, protect citizens from health threats and support dynamic health systems. It is mainly implemented through EU action programmes, currently the third health programme (2014-2020). Challenges include tackling the health needs of an ageing population and reducing the incidence of preventable chronic diseases. Since 2014, steps forward have been made in a number of areas, including antimicrobial resistance, childhood obesity, health systems, medical devices and vaccination. EU action on social security issues in the EU is closely related to the implementation of what is known as the European Pillar of Social Rights as well as labour market developments. The EU helps to promote social cohesion, seeking to foster equality as well as solidarity through adequate, accessible and financially sustainable social protection systems and social inclusion policies. EU spending on social security is tied to labour market measures. Progress can be observed on issues such as work-life balance and equal opportunities, but there is more to do. In the future, social protection schemes will need to be further adapted to the new labour market realities (fewer manufacturing jobs, atypical contracts, 'platform work', etc.). In its proposal for the 2021-2027 multiannual financial framework, the European Commission plans to boost funding to improve workers' employment opportunities, and strengthen social cohesion through an enlarged 'European Social Fund Plus'. The fund would also incorporate finance for the stand-alone health programme, with the aim of creating synergies with the other building blocks of the European Pillar of Social Rights: equal opportunities and access to the labour market; fair working conditions; and social protection and inclusion. This is an update of an earlier briefing issued in advance of the 2019 European elections.

Boosting cooperation on health technology assessment

15-04-2019

The European Commission has proposed a regulation on health technology assessment (HTA). HTA is a research-based tool that supports decision-making in healthcare by assessing the added value of a given health technology compared to others. The proposal would provide the basis for permanent EU-level cooperation in four areas. Member States would still be responsible for assessing the non-clinical (economic, ethical, social, etc.) aspects of health technology, and for pricing and reimbursement. While ...

The European Commission has proposed a regulation on health technology assessment (HTA). HTA is a research-based tool that supports decision-making in healthcare by assessing the added value of a given health technology compared to others. The proposal would provide the basis for permanent EU-level cooperation in four areas. Member States would still be responsible for assessing the non-clinical (economic, ethical, social, etc.) aspects of health technology, and for pricing and reimbursement. While Member States could choose to delay participation in the joint work until three years after the rules enter into force, it would become mandatory after six years. Stakeholders have broadly welcomed the proposal. National parliaments, however, are divided in their appreciation of it. The Council has not yet agreed its position; technical discussions continue. Parliament's Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety adopted its report on 13 September 2018, and the report was voted in plenary on 3 October. However, with interinstitutional trilogue negotiations unable to start, on the Council side, Parliament adopted its final position at first reading on 14 February 2019.

Protezione dei lavoratori dagli agenti cancerogeni o mutageni: terza proposta

20-03-2019

La Commissione europea sta portando avanti un processo in più fasi al fine di modificare la direttiva 2004/37/CE (direttiva sugli agenti cancerogeni e mutageni), ampliando il suo ambito di applicazione e includendo e/o rivedendo i valori limite di esposizione professionale per una serie di agenti chimici cancerogeni o mutageni. La terza proposta di modifica della direttiva riguarda cinque ulteriori agenti. L'accordo sulla proposta, raggiunto dopo i negoziati di trilogo, necessita ora di un voto di ...

La Commissione europea sta portando avanti un processo in più fasi al fine di modificare la direttiva 2004/37/CE (direttiva sugli agenti cancerogeni e mutageni), ampliando il suo ambito di applicazione e includendo e/o rivedendo i valori limite di esposizione professionale per una serie di agenti chimici cancerogeni o mutageni. La terza proposta di modifica della direttiva riguarda cinque ulteriori agenti. L'accordo sulla proposta, raggiunto dopo i negoziati di trilogo, necessita ora di un voto di conferma del Parlamento, previsto per la tornata di marzo II.

Mobile phones and health: Where do we stand?

20-03-2019

Mobile phones are an integral part of everyday life, and it is hard to imagine a world without them. There are nevertheless health concerns, and the debate is ongoing. There is a vast body of research on the potential risks from exposure to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields such as those emitted by mobile phones. Yet scientific opinion remains split over the possibility of a link between mobile phone radiation and health problems. The results of research in this area have been interpreted in ...

Mobile phones are an integral part of everyday life, and it is hard to imagine a world without them. There are nevertheless health concerns, and the debate is ongoing. There is a vast body of research on the potential risks from exposure to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields such as those emitted by mobile phones. Yet scientific opinion remains split over the possibility of a link between mobile phone radiation and health problems. The results of research in this area have been interpreted in a variety of ways, and studies have been criticised for their methodological flaws, lack of statistical significance, and bias. In 2011, the International Agency for Research on Cancer, a branch of the World Health Organization, classified radiofrequency electromagnet fields as possibly carcinogenic (cancer-causing) to humans. The European Union defined basic restrictions for limiting exposure to electromagnetic fields in Council Recommendation 1999/519/EC, setting maximum values that should not to be exceeded. Moreover, in view of the scientific uncertainty, the European Environment Agency advises taking a precautionary approach. Two sets of large-scale experimental studies involving laboratory animals, one from the United States National Toxicology Program and another from the Italian Ramazzini Institute, have recently brought the debate to the fore again. Both found varying levels of evidence of certain tumours in some of the animals tested. The results have nevertheless prompted diverging conclusions.

Limits on exposure to carcinogens and mutagens at work: Second proposal

15-03-2019

The European Commission has proposed to amend Directive 2004/37/EC, by expanding its scope and by including and/or revising occupational exposure limit values for a number of cancer- or mutation-causing chemical agents. The initiative is proceeding in steps. The first proposal, submitted in May 2016, covered 13 priority chemical agents. The current (second) proposal addresses a further seven agents. Broad discussions with scientists and the social partners fed into both proposals. On the whole, trade ...

The European Commission has proposed to amend Directive 2004/37/EC, by expanding its scope and by including and/or revising occupational exposure limit values for a number of cancer- or mutation-causing chemical agents. The initiative is proceeding in steps. The first proposal, submitted in May 2016, covered 13 priority chemical agents. The current (second) proposal addresses a further seven agents. Broad discussions with scientists and the social partners fed into both proposals. On the whole, trade unions and employers welcomed the current proposal. Trilogue agreement was reached on 11 October 2018. As proposed by the European Parliament, diesel engine exhaust emissions were included in the scope of the directive. After completion of the legislative procedure, the final act was signed by the presidents of the co-legislators on 16 January 2019. Directive (EU) 2019/130 entered into force on 20 February 2019 and is to be transposed into national laws within two years, by 20 February 2021 at the latest. Third edition. The ‘EU Legislation in Progress’ briefings are updated at key stages throughout the legislative procedure.

Limits on exposure to carcinogens and mutagens at work: Third proposal

18-02-2019

The European Commission has proposed to amend Directive 2004/37/EC by expanding its scope and by including and/or revising occupational exposure limit values for a number of cancer- or mutation-causing substances. The initiative is proceeding in steps. The first proposal of May 2016 covered 13 priority chemical agents, the second, of January 2017, a further seven. The current (third) proposal addresses an additional five. Broad discussions with scientists and the social partners fed into all three ...

The European Commission has proposed to amend Directive 2004/37/EC by expanding its scope and by including and/or revising occupational exposure limit values for a number of cancer- or mutation-causing substances. The initiative is proceeding in steps. The first proposal of May 2016 covered 13 priority chemical agents, the second, of January 2017, a further seven. The current (third) proposal addresses an additional five. Broad discussions with scientists and the social partners fed into all three proposals. Reacting to the Commission’s set of measures as a whole, trade unions have acknowledged the importance of further improving the existing framework. Actors on the employers’ side have underlined the need to ensure that values are proportionate and feasible in terms of technical implementation. Parliament’s Employment and Social Affairs Committee voted its report on 20 November 2018. It includes the call to bring cytotoxic medicines, which are used in the treatment of cancer, within the scope of the directive, as well as to grant incentives to businesses that comply. Council agreed on its position on 6 December 2018. Trilogue negotiations gave rise to a provisional agreement in January 2019. Once endorsed by the Council, it will be voted in Parliament’s plenary. Second edition. The ‘EU Legislation in Progress’ briefings are updated at key stages throughout the legislative procedure.

Protezione dei lavoratori dagli agenti cancerogeni o mutageni: seconda proposta

05-12-2018

La Commissione europea ha avviato un processo in più fasi al fine di modificare la direttiva 2004/37/CE (direttiva sugli agenti cancerogeni e mutageni), ampliando il suo ambito di applicazione e includendo e/o rivedendo i valori limite di esposizione professionale per una serie di agenti chimici cancerogeni o mutageni. La seconda proposta di modifica della direttiva sugli agenti cancerogeni e mutageni riguarda sette ulteriori agenti. Essa è parte delle iniziative contenute nella dichiarazione comune ...

La Commissione europea ha avviato un processo in più fasi al fine di modificare la direttiva 2004/37/CE (direttiva sugli agenti cancerogeni e mutageni), ampliando il suo ambito di applicazione e includendo e/o rivedendo i valori limite di esposizione professionale per una serie di agenti chimici cancerogeni o mutageni. La seconda proposta di modifica della direttiva sugli agenti cancerogeni e mutageni riguarda sette ulteriori agenti. Essa è parte delle iniziative contenute nella dichiarazione comune che il Parlamento, il Consiglio e la Commissione si sono impegnati a trattare in via prioritaria. L'accordo sulla proposta, raggiunto dopo i negoziati di trilogo, necessita ora di un voto di conferma, previsto per la tornata di dicembre.

EYE event - I am Doctor Robot. What can I do for you?

16-05-2018

Robotics is moving from the realm of science fiction to palpable reality and, although they are unlikely to replace health professionals any time soon, robots already have many uses in medicine and healthcare. The use and development of robots come with new challenges, some ethical. The European Parliament has taken a stance and asked the European Commission to come up with rules.

Robotics is moving from the realm of science fiction to palpable reality and, although they are unlikely to replace health professionals any time soon, robots already have many uses in medicine and healthcare. The use and development of robots come with new challenges, some ethical. The European Parliament has taken a stance and asked the European Commission to come up with rules.

Limits on exposure to carcinogens and mutagens at work

22-01-2018

The European Commission proposes to amend Directive 2004/37/EC by expanding its scope and by including and/or revising occupational exposure limit values for a number of cancer-causing chemical agents. According to the Commission, this would improve workers' health protection, increase the effectiveness of the EU framework and promote clarity for economic operators. Overall, the proposal received a broad welcome from stakeholders. After completion of the legislative procedure at first reading in ...

The European Commission proposes to amend Directive 2004/37/EC by expanding its scope and by including and/or revising occupational exposure limit values for a number of cancer-causing chemical agents. According to the Commission, this would improve workers' health protection, increase the effectiveness of the EU framework and promote clarity for economic operators. Overall, the proposal received a broad welcome from stakeholders. After completion of the legislative procedure at first reading in the European Parliament and the Council, the presidents of the co-legislators signed the final act on 12 December 2017. The directive applies as from 16 January 2018.

Attuazione della strategia europea sulla disabilità

24-11-2017

Nell'Unione europea quasi una persona su sei di età superiore a 15 anni vive con una qualche forma di disabilità. Con l’invecchiare della popolazione, tale numero è probabilmente destinato ad aumentare in modo significativo. Nel febbraio 2017, la Commissione europea ha pubblicato una relazione sullo stato di avanzamento dei lavori relativi all'attuazione della strategia europea sulla disabilità 2010-2020. Il Parlamento dovrebbe esaminare una relazione d'iniziativa sull'attuazione della strategia ...

Nell'Unione europea quasi una persona su sei di età superiore a 15 anni vive con una qualche forma di disabilità. Con l’invecchiare della popolazione, tale numero è probabilmente destinato ad aumentare in modo significativo. Nel febbraio 2017, la Commissione europea ha pubblicato una relazione sullo stato di avanzamento dei lavori relativi all'attuazione della strategia europea sulla disabilità 2010-2020. Il Parlamento dovrebbe esaminare una relazione d'iniziativa sull'attuazione della strategia nel corso della tornata novembre II.

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