ECDC Director at the informal meeting of EU Health Ministers

7 Oct 2022
Prague, Czech Republic

On Wednesday 7 September, ECDC Director Andrea Ammon participated in the informal meeting of EU Health Ministers in Prague, organised by the Czech Presidency.

The first session of the meeting aimed at discussing the public health impacts of the war in Ukraine, while also looking at ways in which the EU can support the recovery and strengthening of the Ukrainian health system in the future. The Presidency has invited the Ukrainian Minister of Health to participate in the debate to discuss current developments and needs both from the short-term and long-term perspective. The Director spoke about ECDC’s support for Ukraine and its neighbouring countries, including considerations for longer-term support.

In the second session, Ministers discussed the role of vaccination as a crucial component of disease prevention. As one of the priorities of the Czech Presidency, the discussions not only focused on tackling vaccine hesitancy, but also reflected on how to make the best use of existing tools to strengthen vaccination efforts. In this context, the Presidency aims to adopt Council Conclusions at the EPSCO Council in December highlighting measures to address the negative trend of declining vaccine uptake. Andrea Ammon was invited to speak about ECDC’s work and opinions in this regard and also provided an update on the epidemiological situation on COVID-19 and monkeypox.

The working lunch was dedicated to oncology, which is another priority of the Czech Presidency. In particular, Ministers were invited to reflect on the implementation of Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan and the forthcoming Council Recommendation on cancer screening.

For the afternoon, DG HERA invited Ministers and the Directors of ECDC and EMA to participate in an ad hoc HERA Board meeting at ministerial level.

For more information, please see the website of the Czech Presidency of the Council of the EU