New EU Body To Deal With COVID-19 Vaccine Strategy & Procurement
Supply Chains & Tech Transfer Also On The Agenda
Europe is stepping up its efforts to prepare for future health crises. A new parliamentary committee will look at how to make the most of the lessons learned from the coronavirus pandemic, while EU health ministers will next week discuss “vaccine solidarity” and the draft regulation on cross-border threats to health.
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The new regulation on cross-border threats to health is the final part of the European Health Union, along with strengthened roles for the European Medicines Agency and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control. Its aim is to ensure collective EU action on preparedness, surveillance, risk assessment, and early warning and response in the event of health emergencies.
The task force, which is a key component of the European Medicines Agency’s extended mandate, will include experts in the fields of vaccinology, antivirals, clinical trials, immunology and immunotherapy.
The process of drafting an international agreement on pandemic preparedness and response is picking up speed, although one NGO has warned that this must not distract from more immediate priorities such as technology transfer for producing COVID-19 medical products.