The European Parliament has approved a stronger mandate for the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC).
The move should ensure better coordination between national authorities, European institutions and international organisations in preventing and managing disease outbreaks. The stronger mandate also gives the ECDC the opportunity to better coordinate data collection and analysis.
The centre will closely monitor health systems in each Member State for their capacity to deal with outbreaks and will provide scientific advice on where improvement is possible.
A second agreement negotiated with Member States also received the Parliament's approval. It relates to a series of measures to improve the EU's anticipation of health crises. For example, the Commission will be able to formally declare an emergency, thus triggering closer cooperation between Member States and allowing for faster supplies of medical equipment.
The two legal texts form the first part of the so-called European Health Union, which is being expanded on the basis of the lessons learned from the corona pandemic.