EU Ministers Discuss Patient Rights and Alcohol Policy

During the second day of the EU's Health Ministers’ meeting in Jönköping on Tuesday, the ministers discussed patient rights when receiving healthcare in other EU countries, as well as the prevention of alcohol-related health issues.

A recent study has shown that the alcohol consumption of young Europeans has escalated over recent years and during the Swedish presidency Minister for Public Health, Maria Larsson is hoping to be able to create an interest for more “Swedish” policies on alcohol. EU policy on alcohol will be discussed again when ministers reconvene in December.

After Monday’s talks on the problem of bacteria resistant to antibiotics and the development of new effective pharmaceuticals, Social Welfare Minister Göran Hägglund said that ministers were generally in agreement. An extra meeting to discuss the swine flu pandemic will be held in September. Public health Minister Maria Larsson told Swedish News Agency TT on Monday that she hoped that the ministers will be able to agree on a shared strategy against the pandemic, but that it first is up to the individual member states to organise their purchase of vaccine.