Commission welcomes entry into force of EU4Health programme

(Credit: Unsplash)

This article is brought to you in association with the European Commission.


The Commission welcomes the entry into force of the EU4Health programme today. This follows the Council adoption on 17 March and the vote on the programme by the European Parliament on 9 March. It marks the final step towards making €5.1 billion available to strengthen the resilience of health systems and promote innovation in the health sector. EU4Health will make a significant contribution to the post-COVID-19 recovery by making the EU population healthier, supporting the fight against cross-border health threats and boosting the EU’s preparedness and capability to respond effectively to future health crisis, as part of a future strong European Health Union.

Stella Kyriakides, Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, said: “As of today, we start charting a new course for EU health policy. The entry into force of our EU4Health Programme will give us the tools at hand to make long-standing changes in public health. This unprecedented budget of €5.1 billion will enable us to make targeted investments to enhance our crisis preparedness and build stronger, more resilient and more accessible health systems. This is what our citizens rightfully expect from a European Health Union.”

The EU4Health Programme is an ambitious and dedicated funding programme for 2021-2027 to ensure a high level of human health protection in all Union policies and activities in keeping with the One Health approach. The Programme, proposed by the Commission on 28 May 2020, is the EU’s response to COVID-19, which has had a major impact on medical and healthcare staff, patients and health systems in the EU.  EU4Health is the largest EU health programme ever in monetary terms and will provide funding to EU countries, health organisations and NGOs.

EU4Health aims to:

  • Improve and foster health in the Union;
  • Protect people in the Union from serious cross-border threats to health;
  • Enhance the availability, accessibility and affordability of medicinal products, medical devices and crisis-relevant products;
  • Strengthen health systems, their resilience and resource efficiency.

Next steps

The programme is expected to enter into force on 26 March, when it will be published in the EU’s Official Journal. The first work programme for 2021 will be adopted and rolled out by the Commission following consultation with Member States in the EU4Health Steering Group as set out in the EU4Health Regulation. The programme will be implemented by a new executive agency, the Health and Digital Executive Agency, that will start on 1 April.

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