The Manifesto addresses two issues: 

It calls on the political leaders of Europe in the framework of the Conference on the Future of Europe to commit to creating a European Health Union (EHU). 

It invites the people of Europe to engage in building a health policy that contributes to the long-term sustainable development of the European Union (EU). Commitment to progress should not be framed just by the necessity to fight COVID-19 within the framework created by existing European Treaties. Rather it should be framed by the necessity to show the people of Europe that our Union is there to protect us all. The pandemic has created a window of opportunity to take strong public action to build a Union where the lives and health of everyone matters. 

The Manifesto sets out a vision of a EHU (with goals, policies, measures, principles) developed by the signatories of the Manifesto. We need to build a EHU where all people are as healthy as they can be throughout their lives.

The Explanatory Memorandum explains what the Manifesto is calling for and provides background information on its development.


Vytenis Andriukaitis, Dr, WHO Special Envoy for the European region, former European Commissioner for Health and Food Safety (2014-2019), former Minister of Health of Lithuania and Member of the Lithuanian Parliament for six mandates. He led the Lithuanian delegation to the Convention on the Future of Europe.

Clemens Martin Auer, Dr, Special Envoy for Health for the Federal Ministry for Labour, Social Affairs, Health and Consumer Protection, with the focus on international, multilateral and bilateral health policy issues, particular WHO (nominated member of the Executive Board), the United Nations, the EU, the OECD and the European Observatory. He was Director General for the Austrian health system and international affairs from 2005 until September 2018. In this capacity he worked on almost all major healthcare reform projects in Austria since 2003. Clemens was Co-Chair of the EU eHealth Network and is the President of the European Health Form Gastein (EHFG).

Violeta Bulc, MSc, Curator of Ecocivilisation, EU Commissioner for Transport (2014-2020), Deputy Prime Minister of Republic of Slovenia (2014), Entrepreneur, innovator, engineer, author, traveler through space and time. Curious, committed, open, engaging, dedicated to love, truth, collaboration, joy, compassion. Building trust to serve my higher self and higher good. www.ecocivilisation.eu

Anniek de Ruijter, LLB, LLM, PhD is Associate Professor in health law with specific focus on EU and global health. She is a research fellow at the University of Amsterdam School of Law, Amsterdam Centre for European Law and Governance and on the board of the Amsterdam Institute for Global Health and Development. She recently received a personal award of excellence from the Dutch Research Council for her research on ‘EU Constitutional Order for Responding to Major Health Disasters’.

Nick Fahy, Dr, CPSychol, Senior Researcher, Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences, Research Fellow, Green Templeton College, University of Oxford. Background in international health policy and systems, including over a decade in the European Commission. Expert adviser on innovation and implementation, European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies

Josep Figueras, MD, MPH, PhD (econ), FFPH is the director and cofounder of the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies. In addition to WHO, he has served major multilateral agencies and has worked as policy advisor in more than forty countries within the European region and beyond. He is a member of several governing, advisory and editorial boards including the European Health Forum Gastein and is Co-chair of the Scientific Board for the Monti Commission. He is an honorary fellow of the UK Faculty of Public Health, visiting professor at the London School of Economics and received the Andrija Stampar Medal for excellence in Public Health and a Doctorate Honoris Causa from Semmelweis University. His research focuses on comparative health system and policy analysis and has produced several volumes in this field.

Mark Flear, BA (Hons), LLM, PhD, PGCE, FHEA is Reader in Law at Queen’s University Belfast, Northern Ireland, UK. He has been working in the field of EU health law since he began his career in the mid-2000s. His work focuses on public health and new health technologies. His recent work focuses on health security and biomedical research, in particular clinical trials.

Scott L. Greer, Professor of Health Management and Policy, Global Public Health, and Political Science at the University of Michigan, and Senior Expert Advisor on Health Governance to the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies. He is the author of numerous books and articles about European Union and member state health politics and policies. He speaks in a personal capacity.

Klaus Hänsch, 18th President of the European Parliament, Member of the Presidium of the European Convention, Honorary Doctor of the Universities of Loughborough, UK and Duisburg, Germany

Tamara Hervey, LLB PhD FAcSS PFHEA MFPH is Jean Monnet Professor of European Union Law at The City Law School, City University of London. A ‘founding mother’ of European Union health law, she has been working in the field since the 1990s, including with many academics and health policy sector actors across the EU and beyond. She has published over 100 books, articles, comments and notes on the subject.

Dorli Kahr-Gottlieb, MA, Secretary General of the European Health Forum Gastein (EHFG), responsible for the overall management and the joint development of the association with the team, EHFG Board and Advisory Committee members and national & international partners. She holds a degree in Intercultural Competencies and has been engaged in intercultural projects and culture & health trainings. Dorli is a member of the Sciana Health Leaders Network. 

Ilona Kickbusch, Prof, is the Founding Director of the Global Health Centre at the Graduate Institute for International and Development Studies in Geneva. Professor Kickbusch’s key interests relate to the political determinants of health, health in all policies and global health. She established the Global Health Centre at the Graduate Institute and in this context advises countries on their global health strategies and trains health specialists and diplomats in global health diplomacy. She is a member of the Global Preparedness Monitoring Board and is co-chair of UHC 2030. She acts as Council Chair to the World Health Summit in Berlin and is a board member of the European Health Forum Gastein.

Martin McKee, CBE MD DSc FRCP FFPH FMedSci is Professor of European Public Health and Medical Director at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, Research Director at the European Observatory, and Past President of the European Public Health Association (EUPHA). His work has been recognised by election to the UK Academy of Medical Sciences, Academia Europaea, and the US National Academy of Medicine. He has published over 1200 articles in peer reviewed journalists and is among the top 1% researchers by citations worldwide. 

Markus Schneider, Dr, economist, founded BASYS in 1980. He has worked in national and international reform projects on health systems in all EU Member States. He is specialised in national health accounts and institutional economics.

Birute Tumeniene, Dr, Head of Genetic Counselling Unit at the Centre for Medical Genetics, Vilnius University Hospital Santaros Klinikos. Lithuanian representative on the Board of Member States for European Reference Networks. Chair of Working group on ERN integration into national systems, member of WG on ERN Research.

Matthias Wismar, Dr, is Programme Manager at the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies. He is leading, managing and developing studies, policy briefs, rapid responses and face-to-face dissemination events including policy dialogues, evidence briefings, policy mappings, seminars, workshops and book launches. He has extensively published on EU-health policy. Matthias holds a doctorate in political science from Goethe University, Frankfurt (Germany) and was an exchange student at the University of Southampton (UK) and visiting student at the Nuffield College, Oxford (UK). Before joining the Observatory he was heading a health policy research unit at Medical School Hanover (Germany).