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Public Health Policy in the EU

Latest news on the public health policy of the European Union.

Boost for joint European assessment of medicines
A new law adopted by the European Parliament on Wednesday aims to avoid duplicating national assessments to determine a medicine's added value that help EU countries decide on pricing.

Brussels cracks down on use of plastic toxins
The EU Commission took action Wednesday to restrict the placing on the market of articles containing four phthalates found in a wide variety of everyday plastic products, from toys to sport equipment.

Drugs report highlights resurgence of cocaine in Europe
The European Drug Report 2018, issued by the EU drugs agency Thursday, highlights increased availability of cocaine in Europe, with around 2.3 million young adults having used the drug in the last year.

Cannabis use and road safety - frequently asked questions
What is the impact of cannabis use on driving? Do edible and smoked cannabis products affect drivers in the same way? How should the law deal with drivers who take cannabis for medical reasons? These are among the questions addressed today in a new policy briefing on cannabis and driving, published by the EU drugs agency (EMCDDA) and the Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction (CCSA).

Healthy Workplaces Campaign 2018-19
The Healthy Workplaces Campaign 2018-19, Healthy Workplaces Manage Dangerous Substances, aims to raise awareness of dangerous substances in the workplace and disseminate information about how exposure can be prevented. The campaign is coordinated at national level by EU-OSHA's focal points and supported by official campaign and media partners and the Enterprise Europe Network. It has five main objectives: to raise awareness of the relevance and importance of managing dangerous substances in Europe's workplaces; to promote risk assessment, elimination and substitution by providing practical tools and examples of good practice; to raise awareness of the risks of exposure to carcinogens by supporting the exchange of good practices; to target specific groups of workers who are at greater risk, by providing tailored facts and figures and guidance on good practice; to increase awareness of developments in policy and legislation, by providing a plain language overview of the existing legislation and guidance.

Brussels proposes new action against carcinogins at the workplace
The European Commission proposed new measures Thursday to limit workers' exposure to five cancer-causing chemicals, as well as other health problems.

Health Technology Assessment - background guide
The European Commission put forward on 31 January a proposal to boost cooperation amongst EU Member States for assessing health technology.

Brussels looks to boost health technology cooperation
A proposal to boost cooperation amongst EU Member States for assessing health technology will boost innovation and improve the competitiveness of Europe's medical industry, says the Commission.

EU adopts track and trace system for tobacco
The European Union took an important step forward in combating the illicit trade in tobacco products Friday with an EU-wide track and trace system to ensure tobacco products in the EU are easily traceable.

Tobacco track and trace system
A new EU-wide track and trace system adopted on 15 December 2017 is designed to ensure that tobacco products in the EU are easily traceable with a unique identifier for each product.

Commission renews approval of glyphosate herbicide for 5 years
The European Commission renewed for 5 years EU approval of glyphosate Tuesday, following scientific assessment which it says concludes there is no link between glyphosate and cancer in humans.

Approval of pesticides in the EU
What are pesticides? Who decides on their authorisation? Who is responsible for their use? How can pesticides be used safely? An active substance is only approved by the European Commission after a rigorous and lengthy science-based assessment to ensure its use is safe. The assessment of these dossiers is then conducted jointly by: the national authorities in EU Member States; the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).

What I need to know about Biosimilar Medicines - Information for patients
The European Commission launched today additional translations of the Q&A paper “What I Need to Know about Biosimilar Medicines – Information for patients’’ making it available now in 23 official European languages, in order to provide patients with easy-to-understand information about biosimilar medicines. What are biosimilar medicines? How are they produced? How are they approved? Are they safe? – These questions and many more are addressed in this paper. Empowering patients to engage, discuss and participate in decisions on their treatment options is key to improving patient outcomes and contributing to the effective treatment of their individual condition(s).

MEPs move to ban use of phosphates in kebabs
The European Parliament could veto a Commission proposal to allow phosphates in kebab meat, following serious concerns over a potential link between phosphates used as food additives and heart disease.

Not enough prevention: EU health systems report
Only 3 per cent of EU countries' health budgets is spent on prevention, with 80 per cent spent on treatment of diseases, the EU Commission reported on Thursday in a set of 28 'country health profiles'.

State of Health in the EU
The State of Health in the EU is a two-year initiative undertaken by the European Commission that provides policy makers, interest groups, and health practitioners with factual, comparative data and insights into health and health systems in EU countries. The cycle is developed in cooperation with the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies.

UK's EU agencies set for Amsterdam, Paris after Brexit
EU 27 ministers on Monday selected Paris as the new seat for the European Banking Authority, and Amsterdam as the new seat for the European Medicines Agency, to following Britain's exit from the EU.

European Week for Safety and Health at Work
Held each year in October (calendar week 43), the European Week for Safety and Health at Work is a highlight of every Healthy Workplaces Campaign. With hundreds of awareness-raising events taking place across the EU and beyond — and extra impetus given to media coverage — it is an ideal opportunity to get involved in the campaign.

10 years of the EU Paediatric Regulation
The European Commission presented a report on 26 October to the European Parliament and the EU Council on progress made in children's medicines since the Paediatric Regulation came into force 10 years ago.

EU votes in stricter limits on exposure to carcinogens at work
Stricter EU rules to better protect workers from exposure to carcinogens at work - which could help save up to 100,000 lives in the next 50 years - won the EU Parliament’s final approval Wednesday.

Pesticides must be checked for harmful chemicals: MEPs
MEPs at a public hearing Wednesday discussed the EU risk assessment of the herbicide glyphosate, demanding that pesticides be checked for endocrine disrupting chemicals.

Sustainable use of pesticides
This European Commission website contains links to EU Member States' websites on sustainable use of pesticides, including Integrated Pest Management (IPM) , with a view to facilitate the exchange of information between them and increase the flow of relevant information to farmers and the general public.

EU countries should use pesticides more sustainably: report
A report on the sustainable use of pesticides Directive adopted on 10 October 2017 by the European Commission takes stock of progress made by the EU Member States in applying measures to reduce the risks and impacts of pesticides. It covers a wide range of topics such as aerial spraying, information to the public or training of professionals. The report indicates insufficient implementation of the Directive on the sustainable use of pesticides.

EU appraises bids for agencies leaving Britain after Brexit
The EU Commission published Monday its assessment of the 27 offers received from Member States to host the European Banking Authority and the European Medicines Agency - currently located in the United Kingdom.

European Banking Authority and European Medicines Agency after Brexit - Commission assessment of country offers
European Commission publishes assessment of Member State offers to host European Banking Authority and European Medicines Agency after Brexit