The NIGHTINGALE project, funded by the European Union, conducts a mass casualty incident drill in Novara from 18 to 20 October 2023. The exercise aims to put innovative technologies developed by NIGHTINGALE partners to the test in controlled but realistic conditions of mass casualty incidents, including such situations as terrorist attacks, building collapse, and transportation incidents.
The event is organised and hosted by the Centre for Research and Training in Disaster Medicine,Humanitarian Aid and Global Health, Università del Piemonte Orientale (Novara, Italy) and the Italian Red Cross Committee.
On 26 April 2023, the European Commission published a proposal for the revision of EU General Pharmaceutical Legislation, with the objectives to ensure access to affordable medicines, address unmet medical needs, support competitiveness, innovation, and sustainability of the EU’s pharmaceutical industry, enhance crisis preparedness and response and address medicines shortages1. Vaccines play an important role in achieving these objectives.
The European Commission aims, as part of its revision of the Pharmaceutical Package, to formalise the definition of Unmet Medical Needs and to enhance incentives for innovation in areas of UMN. Currently, there is no established, unified definition for UMN, although the concept of UMN is used, throughout medicines’ lifecycles and the value chain for i.e. directing public funds for R&D, determining eligibility to PRIME, accelerated assessment, conditional regulatory approval and orphan designation.
The event, with representatives of citizens and patients, European and national Institutions, the World Health Organisation, experts and practitioners in the field of ATMPs, has been held in Brussels in the afternoon.
Now in its 17th edition, the European Patients' Rights Day has been celebrated today with a conference at the European Parliament in Brussels, from 15:00 to 17:00, promoted by Active Citizenship Network, the European network of Cittadinanzattiva APS. The focus of the event was the challenge of advanced therapies (ATMPs, Advanced Therapy Medicinal Products), a topic related to several patients' rights - access to care, personalised treatment, innovation and information - proclaimed by the European Charter of Patients' Rights. The event was hosted by MEP Brando Benifei (S&D) and organised with the support of MEPs from the "MEP Interest Group European Patients' Rights and Cross-Border Healthcare" and "TRANSFORM". During the Day, contributions has been presented by EU institutions, the World Health Organisation, Patient Advocacy Groups from different countries, independent experts and various practitioners in the field of advanced therapies, or ATMPs (Advanced Therapy Medicinal Products).
From Bolzano to Caltanissetta, health worker shortages run across Italy. At risk are the peripheral and ultra-peripheral inner areas. Presented today an analysis by Cittadinanzattiva on the phenomenon of " medical deserts " in Italy and the measures planned by the NRRP.
Health workers wanted throughout Italy: from the North to the South there is a shortage of doctors, both GPs and hospital doctors, as well as nurses and pediatricians. Particularly in peripheral and ultraperipheral inner areas, so-called medical desertification is evident, i.e., territories where people find it difficult to access care due to, for example, long waiting times, a shortage of health care workers or long distances from the point of care delivery. And the risk is that the problem will not be solved by the funds made available by the NRRP. In fact, only 16-17 percent of Community Homes and Hospitals will be built in these areas. Overcrowding in the offices of general practitioners and pediatricians is especially evident in the North of the country, while the shortage of hospital gynecologists affects not only Caltanissetta, where there is one hospital gynecologist for every 40,565 women, but also Macerata, Viterbo, La Spezia and three provinces in Calabria (Reggio Calabria, Vibo Valentia and Cosenza). These are some of the data from the Report presented today by Cittadinanzattiva, during the event "Health needs in inner areas, between medical desertification and NRRP", held in Rome at the European Commission Representation in Italy.
To promote awareness among citizens and institutions and identify concrete actions to protect global health as a state of biological, psychological, and social well-being and as a fundamental human right. This is the intent of the Civic Charter of Global Health, promoted by Cittadinanzattiva with the involvement of numerous civic actors and experts, which will be presented tomorrow, Nov. 19, from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., in Bastia Umbra as part of the "Fà la cosa giusta/Do the Right Thing" conscious consumption fair.
Presented at the European Parliament a potential win-win economic-accounting solution driven by Italian experts and endorsed by 43 Patients' Advocacy Groups
All potential eligible patients have the right to access Advanced Therapies Medical Products (ATMPs). National health budget constrains cannot be a barrier for patients to have access to ATMPs. Nowadays traditional reimbursement and budgeting schemes are unable to amortize the value of the ATMPs, whose costs and benefits are not aligned. These types of therapies need new and different payment and accounting methods, which take into account the high initial costs and the large and lasting benefits over time, both for the patients and for the national health systems. It is time for an institutional mindset change to classify ATMPs expenditure as an investment and not a cost, possible if it is decided to review - from Eurostat downwards - the economic/financial classifications of healthcare expenditure currently in force.
Endorsed by 43 Patients' Advocacy Groups (PAGs), this was - in synthesis - the key message sent today to the European and Member States Institutions in order to leverage the potential of the advanced therapies for a large number of European citizens in compliance with the budget limits in which healthcare has been paying almost all of Europe for some time.
24th October 2022
The NIGHTINGALE project team, its advisory board and external experts gather in Berlin Messe this week. The project’s 2nd Roundtable and 2nd Plenary meeting are hosted by NIGHTINGALE project partners, the European Society for Trauma & Emergency Surgery (ESTES) and ASTRIAL GmbH amidst the German Congress of Orthopaedics and Traumatology, DKOU 2022.
The purpose of the meetings is to conduct focused discussions to support the technology development, share status updates and discuss next steps in the context of the upcoming testing and validation exercises.
Focus on Italy: little openness of the institutions both in the definition of priorities and in the implementation of the NRRPs.
Civic organizations and social partners not sufficiently involved in the definition of priorities and the implementation procedures of the National Recovery and Resilience Plans (NRRPs): this is generally valid as denounced for some time by the European Economic and Social Committee, and in particular in terms of health public, as emerged from the survey conducted by the European branch of Cittadinanzattiva, Active Citizenship Network, and presented on the occasion of the 16th Edition of the European Patients' Rights Day, which took place online on 20 and 21 April 2022.
Specifically, by questioning 38 patient and rights protection associations from 18 countries, it emerged that in most cases they have not been involved by institutions in the definition of public health priorities. The majority replied that they were not involved at all (35%) or had not been informed of these processes (22%), while 35% responded positively. However, of the latter, only 13% were involved in the consultation processes from the outset, while 11% were very limited.
Five best practices have been awarded today during the event titled “Patients’ right to avoid pain: reducing the burden of COVID-19, promoting best practices across EU”. It has been hold in the framework of the cycle of Eu Webinars «Health at the heart of the future of Europe», which the Italian NGO Cittadinanzattiva-Active Citizenship Network (ACN) will hold to feed the debate of the Conference on the Future of Europe and it included the Award Ceremony of the bi-annual project: “European Civic Prize on Chronic Pain Collecting Good Practices”, la cui terza edizione has been realized with support of Pfizer Inc.
This multi-stakeholder event - which involved civil society, patients, experts, institutions - provided an occasion for demonstrating what the community can offer in terms of good practices, as well as sharing experiences useful for raising awareness about the condition, enhancing the knowledge of positive cases and success, and strengthening the commitment on this topic. Throughout 2020 and 2021, this initiative has allowed us to collect 44 Good Practices coming from 13 different countries: Spain (4), Italy (19), Portugal (5), Belgium (2), Germany (1), The Netherlands (1), Ireland (1),Denmark (1), UK (3), Austria (1), and from extra EU countries: 3 from USA, 2 from Canada, 1 from the Dominican Republic.
Priority attention to non-Covid patients, especially oncological and chronic, in order not to lose the progress achieved in the last 20 years in terms of prevention and treatment. Ease of access to health services and medicines to reduce inequalities and “leave no one behind”.
Investments to have more resilient health services and to support research for more equitable access to care and to address unmet health needs. Strong reference to the sense of responsibility at all institutional levels in order to transform into acts the spirit of solidarity between countries which is a precondition for dealing with crises worldwide.
These, in summary, are the main messages hosted in the video created by Active Citizenship Network, the European branch of the Italian NGO Cittadinanzattiva, and addressed to the political leaders and experts gathered today in Rome on the occasion of the Global Health Summit, co-organized by the European Commission and Italy as chair of the G20. Here is the link to the video