On 3rd and 4th of April 2014, the European COPD Coalition is attending a European Summit on chronic diseases, in Brussels. Held by the European Commission directorate for health (DG SANCO), the event aims at presenting the European policies put in place to tackle the epidemic and to explore ways to address chronic diseases effectively in the EU and will be concluded by recommendations for national and EU decision makers.
ECC will be present at the summit with a small booth and through its membership at EPHA (the European Public Health Alliance) and at ECDA (the European Chronic Disease Alliance) which Presidents are speaking at the summit.
The ECC visual developed for the event (see photo) focuses on the fact that COPD is a major chronic disease, often neglected by policy makers: third chronic disease in the EU in terms of prevalence, third cause of death worldwide, by 2030 according to the World Health Organisation (WHO)* it should be much more prominent on the EU agenda. Respecting the scaleof other diseases, ECC wishes to raise awareness about the importance of COPD as a long term, not curable condition.
ECC had the opportunity to share its views and recommendations on how to address chronic diseases with the Summit organisers, ahead of the summit, in addition to contributing to the debate initiated by an EU consultation with a one-day conference held in 2012**.
ECC calls for a European framework on chronic diseases, adopting a holistic approach and with a specific chapter on COPD. Only a coordinated, health in all policy methodology will allow actions and policies to have a meaningful impact.
COPD shares several risk factors with other illnesses, such a cardio-vascular diseases, cancers and diabetes; they are often co-morbidities. These risk factors (smoking, alcohol, lack of physical activity, poor eating habits, air quality) are at the core of prevention policies and therefore, essential to halt the onset of chronic diseases. ECC calls on Member States to dedicated more funds to disease prevention while not neglecting good quality care, health research and promotion to avoid health inequalities.
Please sign ECC’s Call To Action on COPD to show your support to the 21 measures ECC has put forward to address the burden of the disease.