Two more steps towards a patient-centred health system in Portugal

The participation of patient and healthcare user organisations in health policy and decision-making was in the spotlight in Portugal this month, with two key events marking the health agenda.

On 7 February, the Portuguese National Health Council – an advisory body to the Ministry of Health – held its first seminar on “Public Participation: The Experience of National Health Councils”, where Elena Balestra from EPF presented on “Patient-Centricity: what is it, and why aren’t we there yet?”. The event also included Gabriele Pastorino from WHO Europe, who spoke about “Civil Society Engagement”.

On 8 February, the Charter for Public Participation in Health, a collaborative initiative led by a group of Portuguese patient and user organisations, was discussed at the national parliament with two parliamentary groups. We will know the outcome of this recently-initiated process by next September.   

Author: Sofia Crisóstomo, Co-coordinator of MAIS PARTCIPAÇÃO melhor saúde (MORE PARTICIPATION better health)