WHO and the European Commission to discuss future common action in key areas

Senior officials and technical experts from WHO and the European Commission (EC) will meet in Brussels on 6-7 March to review progress since their last meeting in 2011, and to agree on concrete plans for working together in 2012.

The meeting, hosted by the Commission, brings together senior officials from three groups:

  • WHO clusters including health environment and security; polio, emergencies and country collaboration; family, women's and children's health; health systems and services and innovation, information, evidence and research;
  • WHO Regional Offices for Europe, Africa, the Americas and the Eastern Mediterranean; and 
  • key EC Directorates General (for health and consumers,  European external action service, development and cooperation, information society and media, and research).  

Zsuzsanna Jakab, WHO Regional Director for Europe will lead the WHO delegation and Paola Testori Coggi,  Director General for Health and Consumer Affairs (DG SANCO) will lead EC services.

The thematic areas that will be discussed are humanitarian aid, in-country collaboration, health systems, health security, communication, innovation and health, health information, and health inequalities.

The technical discussions will cover global and Europe-specific dimensions and the goal is to explore and maximize opportunities for synergies, coherence and complementarities for each of the topics. The senior officials will meet to approve the strategic roadmaps and outcome documents that are going to guide their joint work for the next twelve months.

Last year, the two organizations agreed on roadmaps for the WHO European region to strengthen their collaboration around six core areas: health security, health innovation, health systems, health information, health inequalities and country collaboration. The Senior Officials also agreed on outcome documents in the core areas for joint work at the global level.