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Brussels Healthcare Roundtable. 2009 Cross-border Healthcare in Europe and Beyond

March 19 2009
Venue: Hotel Silken Berlaymont, Blvd Charlemagne 11-19, Brussels
Speakers: John Bowis, Rapporteur for patients’ rights directive, European ParliamentnRobert Madelin, Director General, DG SANCOnOlivia Wigzell, Deputy Director General, Healthcare Division, Ministry of Health and Social Affairs, SwedennMarkus Siebert, Chairman Economic Affairs Working Group & Senior Manager Reimbursement & Public Policy, St Jude Medical.nLucy Davis, Trade Policy Analyst, ECIPEnLior Herman, Research Associate, ECIPEnLuciano Cattani, Vice President EucomednFredrik Erixon, Director, ECIPEnGernot Pehnelt, Research Associate, ECIPE
Time: 08:15

A summary writeup of the conference can be downloaded here (PDF).

Presentations from the conference:

Trade in healthcare is not a frequently discussed issue. International trade agreements have historically sidestepped this sensitive issue, and concerns over the impact of globalisation on health and the sustainability of national healthcare systems dominate discussions within the international healthcare community. The proposed patients’ rights directive in Europe has further fuelled debate about the potential benefits and dangers of creating a policy framework that facilitates cross-border movement of healthcare services. If passed, the directive would pave the way for greater ease of interaction between health services within Europe.

The focus of this Roundtable will be the potential benefits to be found in viewing elements of healthcare as tradable services: benefits that could reach not only patients, but also cash-strapped government departments struggling to keep up with healthcare demand in Europe. Discussions will begin with the newly proposed directive, before moving on to what steps, if any, can support or follow it. Broad questions addressed will include:

·      How far will the directive go towards facilitating trade in healthcare within Europe?
·      What potential for healthcare trade is not addressed by the directive, and why?
·      What are the current levels of healthcare trade within Europe, and in what form?
·      How can future potential from greater trade in healthcare be harnessed, within Europe and beyond?

Representatives from the Commission, Parliament, national health ministries and European healthcare industries will discuss these pertinent and timely issues, alongside health economists and scholars who will present recent research findings on healthcare trade in Europe.

You are cordially invited to join in this in-depth discussion on the future of healthcare in Europe.

9:15    Arrival and registration

9:30    Welcome from Fredrik Erixon and Chair

9:40    Session One: The patients rights’ directive

           Progress of negotiations and current status: what will it eventually contain?
           John Bowis

           Reasons for the directive, what will it achieve and what will be the impact on healthcare delivery?
           Robert Madelin

           What are the reactions from / implications for member states?
           Olivia Wigzell


11:15  Coffee Break

11:30  Session Two: Beyond the directive
           What are the reactions from/implications for healthcare industry?
           Markus Siebert

           Is there a need to go further? How is healthcare currently traded in Europe?
           Lucy Davis  and Lior Herman

           What further potential exists for cross-border healthcare trade in Europe? – engaging policy makers and industry.  
           Luciano Cattani


13:00  Close

Chair: Gernot Pehnelt