CoFoE: Stronger EMA Powers Might Not Bring Positive Results, Claims Jurzyca

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Illustration picture (photo by TASR)

Strasbourg/Bratislava, January 27 (TASR) – There is a risk that strengthening the powers of the European Medicines Agency (EMA) might bring increased bureaucracy and no positive outcome, reads a statement by Slovak MEP Eugen Jurzyca provided to TASR by the European Parliament’s (EP) press department on Thursday.

Jurzyca was explaining why he didn’t back the proposal in the EP.

“Such a step must be preceded by impact analyses. Just because it was more effective to procure vaccines against COVID-19 centrally, that doesn’t necessarily mean that vaccines against flu should be purchased by the European Commission,” said Jurzyca.

A total of 655 MEPs voted for the preliminary agreement on strengthening of EMA’s powers, while 31 were against and eight refrained from the voting. The directive has yet to be formally okayed by the EU Ministerial Council. Subsequently, it will be ratified and published in the Official Journal of the EU. It should take effect as of March 1, 2022.

However, Jurzyca said that this initiative hasn’t been preceded by a value-for-money analysis, EIA analysis or assessment of best practices in member states. “Therefore, there’s a threat that it will only be a case of bureaucracy growing, while no positive results will come. That’s why I didn’t support the proposal,” said the MEP.

The future of health care in the EU is one of the issues dealt with by the Conference on the Future of Europe (CoFoE), which brings together four panels of randomly selected citizens from EU-member states.

Following its last meeting, the third citizens’ panel included in its recommendations strengthening the powers of the EMA in order to ensure the same-quality health care and fair costs all over the EU. Citizens’ panels will submit their recommendations to the EP. The recommendations of these panels will be included in the final report prepared by the CoFoE Executive Board in the spring of 2022.