The votes are closed, and the campaign goes onLast week, we had the opportunity to cast our votes for the 2014-2019 European parliamentary representatives. We are delighted that 74 Candidates supported our campaign and we look forward working with the elected ones to ensure that patients‘ rights have the right place on the healthcare agenda and in the next Health Commissioner‘s portfolio. We should have a clearer overview of the new Parliament in the following weeks and we will keep you updated.
Our Patients’ Elections Campaign was launched on 1 October 2013 and received the support of 677 individuals and organisations. We would like to extend our warmest thanks to all our supporters, including the now former MEPs and non-elected national candidates for the 2014 elections. We encourage them to pursue their commitment to patients in their future national endeavours. We would especially like to thank the outgoing Health Commissioner Tonio Borg and former MEP Dagmar Roth-Behrendt (S&D, Germany) (pictured) for their exceptional support throughout our campaign. Finally, we thank and look forward to working together with the 21 allies in health throughout Europe who supported the campaign.
Our work, however, does not stop here. As highlighted by David Earnshaw of Burson-Marsteller at our Annual General Meeting, this election gives more legitimacy and bargaining power to the European citizens, as the President of the European Commission will be elected by us for the first time. We must therefore continue to campaign to ensure that patients are a priority for the next head of the Commission before he/she is officially appointed. We will also continue our work to encourage elected MEPs to incorporate the patients’ perspective across all policies that affect us and secure a place in the next Health Commissioner‘s portfolio for patients’ rights.
After analysing the 2014 Elections Manifestos of the major parties in the European Parliament, we wrote letters asking the groups how they plan to take patients into consideration in line with their manifestos. Gaining widespread support from the European political parties is fundamental to give strength to our work on the urgent need to remove access barriers to healthcare and advance patients’ rights in Europe.
While the 2014 Elections Campaign has been thus far a success, we look forward to building further on the work we have done to continue establishing a strong patients‘ voice and driving better health in Europe.
Post-elections Steps and likely timetable:
- June: New MEPs set up office, Brussels
- 2 June: Political groups convene, Brussels
- July-December 2014: Italian Presidency of European Council
- 14-17 July: MEPs elect European Commission president, Strasbourg
- August: Member states put forward nominations for European commissioners
- September: Commissioner nominee hearings at the European Parliament
- 22-23 September: Informal EPSCO Health Meeting
- 20-23 October: European Parliament votes to approve new college of commissioners
- 1 November: New college of commissioners takes office
- November: Member states select new president of the European Council and High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy
- 1 December: EPSCO Health Meeting
Contact: EPF Communication Officer, Cynthia Bonsignore, firstname.lastname@example.org.