Health in the European Pillar of Social Rights – what actions do we want?
How and through which actions can we make better use of the European Pillar of Social Rights and its principle 16 to see measurable improvements for health and wellbeing for all? In order to increase ownership, reflect the needs and bring the various actors together, EuroHealthNet will convene a consultative meeting on the principle 16 with its member organisations, key EU health stakeholders and representatives of the EU institutions. We will seek to stimulate a discussion to bring forward concrete policy ideas within the remit of the principle 16. Specifically, we will reflect on:
- main gaps seen in the implementation of the Pillar at EU and national level – principle 16;
- policy, practice and research actions needed to support the implementation of the Pillar – principle 16;
- organisation of the governance of the Pillar and its Action Plan, in terms of monitoring, reporting, stakeholders’ engagement.
Background: The Political Guidelines of Commission President von der Leyen commit to putting forward an Action Plan to implement fully the European Pillar of Social Rights, to reconcile the social and the market in today’s modern economy. The Commission Communication “A Strong Social Europe for Just Transitions” launched a consultation process until end November 2020 towards the Action Plan presented and endorsed at a dedicated Social Summit during the Portuguese Council Presidency in spring 2021.
The principle 16 of the Pillar states that ‘everyone has the right to timely access to affordable, preventive and curative health care of good quality.’ While ensured in theory, tangible and effective commitments must follow in practice – be it on the fight against cancers and other NCDs, improving sustainable food systems, investing in resilient health systems through efficient and effective primary and community health, and ensuring a skilled and competent health workforce. Many of those working in health systems across the EU have intimate knowledge of how well they are performing and delivering on the right to health care (as one factor in ensuring the right to health itself), and the priority actions needed to secure and improve the situation. Their voices are therefore crucial and must be heard in the design and realisation +of the Action Plan.