European Societies and UEMS discuss increased co-operation

The UEMS organised a meeting with representatives of European Scientific Societies in Brussels on Saturday 1st March 2014 with an aim to discuss how to foster synergies among the medical profession to shape the future of healthcare delivery in Europe and improve the quality of care provided to European citizens.

The meeting attracted representatives from more than 20 European Scientific Societies and 30 UEMS Specialist Sections.

Dr Andrzej Rys and Dr Enrique Terol (DG Health and Consumer, European Commission) presented the key concepts for establishing European Reference Networks (ERN) in accordance with the directive on patient's rights in cross-border care. In doing so, they requested the UEMS and European Societies to provide their input on:

  • Identifying the domains and group of diseases for which Networks could be created.
  • Possible ways to establish Networks with a multidisciplinary and multi-speciality approach.
  • Criteria that should be used for a centre to be eligible for an European Reference Network.

The participants welcomed the initiative from the Commission to establish European reference Networks and highlighted the need to involve all stakeholders to secure concrete outcomes and pave the way to successful implementation of ERN.

Examples of good cooperation developed and reinforced over the years were also presented and demonstrated the positive outcome of enhanced co-operation for healthcare professionals and ultimately for patients themselves. Healthy co-operation already existed in many specialities in areas such as European Speciality Examinations, accreditation of Live Educational Events or elaboration of European Curriculum.

This meeting confirmed the need and interest in establishing a constructive dialogue between organisations persuing common goals. The UEMS will propose several action points as follow-up for this meeting.

The presentations given during this meeting are available below.