Press Release - Promoting health at all stages of the lifecycle
07.12.2012, 15:18 (CET)
EU Health Ministers today, December 7, adopted Conclusions on organs donation and transplantation and healthy ageing across the lifecycle. Furthermore, during the second day of the Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Affairs (EPSCO) Council in Brussels, chaired by Cyprus’ Health Minister Dr Androulla Agrotou, the ministers agreed to a general approach on aligning the existing Commission implementing powers for the five vertical directives on foodstuffs, the so-called ‘breakfast directives’. The ministers were also updated on the proposals for revision of the Directives for medical devices and for in vitro diagnostic medical devices as well as on the progress made in the discussion for the Regulation Proposal for the establishment of the 3rd Health Programme 2014 -2020.

The EPSCO Council adopted conclusions on issue of organ donation and transplantation, which was a Cyprus Presidency priority.

Promoting efficiency and accessibility of organ transplantation systems

The conclusions call for the strengthening of cooperation not only among Member States, but also with the European Commission, in promoting actions to ensure organ availability, efficiency and accessibility of transplantation systems as well as improvement of their quality and safety.

Ministers also adopted Council Conclusions on healthy ageing throughout the lifecycle, as this emerged from the results of the High-Level Conference held in Lefkosia (Nicosia) by the Cyprus Presidency in September 2012. The conclusions call for concerted actions to prevent diseases and protect and promote health at all stages of the lifecycle.

At the same time, Ministers were briefed by the Cyprus Presidency on the progress made on the discussions for the Proposal for a Decision on serious cross-border threats to health. The Health Ministers identified ways to move forward and bridge the existed discrepancies.

Medical devices

Ministers also received updates from the Cyprus Presidency and the European Commission on the revision of the Proposals for the amendment of the Directives on medical devices and in vitro diagnostic medical devices.

During the working lunch the Ministers of Health had the opportunity to discuss the progress made on the implementation of the joint action plan on medical devices following the breast implants PIP crisis.

Briefing on pricing of medicinal products for human use and other issues

The Cyprus Presidency also updated the Council on the progress achieved in relation to the proposal for the amendment of the Directive for the transparency of measures regulating the pricing and reimbursement of medicinal products for human use and their inclusion in the scope of public health insurance systems and the

legislative proposal for food intended for infants and young children and on food for special medical purposes. On this second issue, the Cyprus Presidency succeeded in reaching an initial agreement, bridging the existing differences through the provision of trilogues on the specific issues.

Health Ministers were also briefed on the Proposal for a Regulation establishing the 3rd Health Programme and the issues which have been identified as outstanding, as well as on the results of the 5th Session of the Conference of the Parties of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (CoP5 FCTC).

The Commission briefed ministers on the work undertaken to assist Member States on the Transposition of the Directive on the application of patients rights in cross-border healthcare, by the end of October 2013.  

Finally, the Presidency informed ministers of the conclusions of the main conferences organised in Cyprus during the Presidency, while the forthcoming Irish Presidency provided a short briefing on its work programme for the first half of 2013.
During the Press Conference which followed the meeting, Dr. Androulla Agrotou expressed her outmost pleasure for the progress achieved on “very important issues related to health and the protection of consumer rights”.

She also expressed her gratitude to her colleagues and the Commission for their cooperation throughout the Cyprus Presidency of the EU, wishing the European Commissioner for Health and Consumer Policy, Mr. Tonio Borg, and the forthcoming Irish Presidency, good luck.

On his part, Commissioner Borg expressed his satisfaction for the progress achieved on a number of very important issues. He also congratulated the Cyprus Presidency for its hard work during the last 6 months.

Presidency Spokesperson in Brussels
Marianna Karageorgis

Coreper I

Telephone: +32 27404002
Mobile: +32 473858237
Communications Officer
Demetris Constantinou

Ministry of Health

Telephone: +35722605386

Watch the press conference here

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