A Science|Business closed-door online workshop, organised in partnership with Sanofi, on the new EU BARDA-type agency
The COVID-19 crisis has ignited the need for a strategy to protect Europe against supply chain interruptions, notably for medical equipment, but also pharmaceuticals. After coming under criticism for falling short in matching US support for COVID-19 vaccines and therapeutics development, the European Commission committed to unprecedented levels of public investment into COVID-19 vaccines development. It has agreed outline deals to purchase millions of doses from several drug companies. In parallel, in the context of the European Health Union, the Commission is advancing its plan to establish the new EU Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Authority (HERA), an equivalent to the US Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, BARDA. While the workings of this new EU body still needs to be fleshed out - a legislative proposal to set up the agency is tabled in the fourth quarter of 2021 – HERA already appears to be deeply embedded in the recently released Pharmaceutical Strategy for Europe.
These announcements, symbols of a clear ambition to strengthen the EU’s capacity to respond to cross-border health threats and emergencies and support unmet medical needs, do raise several unresolved questions such as:
- How will HERA function, especially in terms of governance?
- Where will this new EU body fit between EU4Health and Horizon Europe programmes, both subject to severe budget cuts by the European Council?
- Does the policy response to the COVID-19 crisis set new grounds for long-term public-private collaboration in health, from discovery to distribution and use?
- The European Commission is making the case for increased competences in health at the EU level. But are EU member states ready for this?
Science|Business is bringing together a select group of high-level academic, industry and policy experts, from the EU, the US and international organisations, to draw a set of recommendations related to the purpose, the role and the governance of this new authority. A public roadmap will be published in February 2021.
15:30 - Welcome
15:40 - What would be the benefits for Europe to create an equivalent of BARDA?
An open debate around the “raison d’être" and how to best set the grounds for the future HERA, drawing lessons from the US experience and the COVID-19 crisis.
16:15 - Funding across the value chain (R&D, manufacturing, deployment): Setting the grounds for a change of mindset and framework
A discussion around state aid rules, the balance between transparency and the competitiveness of participating companies and the transition from traditional research PPPs to ‘one project-one company’ type of collaboration.
16:50 - HERA in the European and international health ecosystems: how will it fit?
A discussion around the governance of the Agency, the relation between HERA and other instruments in place at the European (e.g. ECDC, EMA, EDCTP) and international (e.g. BARDA, CEPI, WHO) levels and the possible reshuffling of health competences between the EU and Member States.
17:30 - Ends
For more information on this by invitation only event, please contact Lysiane Pons ([email protected])