At the EU level, Decision 1082/2013/EU on serious cross-border threats to health provides the key framework to improve preparedness and strengthen capacity to coordinate responses to health emergencies caused by biological, chemical and environmental agents, as well as threats of unknown origin. The Decision lays down rules on epidemiological surveillance, monitoring, early warning, and combating serious cross-border threats to health in order to coordinate and complement national policies. Frameworks contributing to health security exist also in the areas of food safety, animal health, and pharmaceutical products. In addition a large number of policies exist to support the EU security agenda.
Under Decision 1082/2013/EU, the Commission closely cooperates withEU Member States, EU agencies, in particular the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), the European Medicines Agency (EMA), the World Health Organisation (WHO), and international partners to prevent and control serious cross-border health threats by using strategic structures and mechanisms.
These include the Health Security Committee (HSC) for information exchange, consultation and coordination between Member States; the Early Warning and Response System (EWRS) for notifying alerts on health threats and measures undertaken by Member States; and the EU Health Programme for supporting Member States through training and exercises, and by facilitating the sharing of experiences, guidelines and procedures.
Note: To obtain a certificate of attendance is necessary a personal request on the same day, at the Secretariat Office of the Institute.
Wolfgang Philipp is acting Head of Unit for "crisis management and preparedness in health" at the Directorate General for Health and Food Safety of the European Commission. He holds a PhD in microbiology of the University of Paris, France and worked in tuberculosis research at the Pasteur Institute in Paris, France and in Bern and Basel, Switzerland before joining the European Commission.