Global Challenges, Territorial Answers: the Future of Health in Europe - Event organised by EUREGHA on behalf of the Committee of the Region's Interregional Group on Health and Well-being

Starting on January of this year, EUREGHA began its 2018 policy cycle on the topic of primary care. Throughout the year, we have promoted the importance of primary care in various ways. The first was the Committee of the Regions Interregional Group on Health and Wellbeing’s meeting on “The Future of Primary Health Care in Europe.” At the meeting, the speakers highlighted that changing health needs demand a more responsive primary care, capable of integrated care delivery. Ms. Luminita Silvia Hayes, senior advisor for the Brussels office of the World Health Organization, spoke about the importance of healthcare systems being strong and resistant enough in order to survive in a rapidly-changing environment and underlined the importance of solidarity. She concluded by suggesting a way to strengthen our healthcare systems for all people is to make sure that no one is left behind, early investment in primary care is key and the role of regional authorities is essential. Jan De Maeseneer, who is the chair of the expert panel on effective ways of investing in health, illustrated the benefits of investing in primary care since 90% of newly-presented problems can be addressed at the primary care level. Investing in primary care will also work towards more preventative measures instead of waiting until people are ill. EUREGHA has furthered their awareness by closely monitoring current news and policies about primary care. EUREGHA also spent the policy cycle collecting best practices in the field of primary care from our members to publish in a booklet. On the 6th of December during the annual conference, our Chair, Nick Batey, presented the best practices booklet to the attendants. This booklet is a collection of various best practices from EUREGHA’s members discussing how they are successfully implementing primary care in their region. The sharing of best practices at the annual conference is a crucial part of EUREGHA’s mission to encourage cross-border dialogue and the dissemination of knowledge. You can read this year’s best practice booklet, as well as previous ones, under the publications tab on our website.