The COVID-19 pandemic poses a major challenge that has a disruptive effect on European health systems and societies. European health professionals are working around the clock to save the lives of European patients, and governments and the EU Institutions are doing everything in their power to support their heroic efforts. However, the medical and research societies that health professionals rely on for up-to-date information on clinical practice are facing serious challenges. As medical congresses are being cancelled or postponed, not-for-profit societies are faced with substantial costs that may threaten their existence and thus their ability to provide clinical guidance to health professionals. Therefore, the Biomedical Alliance in Europe calls on the EU and Member States to support medical societies to ensure they can continue providing their services now and in the future.
We believe that European cooperation is more important than ever and salute EU and Member State’s efforts to contain the spread of the virus. The 33 European Medical societies that the Biomedical Alliance in Europe (BioMed Alliance) represents have contributed throughout the current crisis by advancing research on COVID-19, releasing specialised e-learning materials on this topic for their members, and even by making some of their educational resources freely available to all health professionals.
European medical and research societies and associations are severely hit by the COVID-19 crisis and need help from decision makers. Providing continuing medical education and disseminating research results is the main mission of these not-for-profit organisations, and every year their congresses are attended by hundreds of thousands of healthcare professionals from Europe and the rest of the world. They rely on medical and research experts, who voluntarily share the latest developments in medicine through educational activities and in renowned medical journals. The congresses play a crucial role in continuously updating the knowledge of health professionals and are a key source for developing online educational materials. Unfortunately, but understandably, many societies have had to cancel or postpone their congresses this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Consequently, many of these not-for-profit associations are losing essential components of their economical basis, threatening their core services to healthcare communities and, in some cases, even the very existence of societies.
The current COVID-19 pandemic requires that we work together to strengthen the environment for translational and clinical health research and by steering and coordinating research efforts in Europe. European medical and research societies are indispensable in this endeavour to maintain and develop the outstanding quality of European health services. The BioMed Alliance calls for support for medical societies during these difficult times by addressing the financial threat these societies currently face, and by providing supporting measures to ensure medical and research societies can continue fulfilling their important mission.
About the Biomedical Alliance in Europe:
The Biomedical Alliance in Europe is the result of a unique initiative of 33 leading European medical societies that together include more than 400,000 researchers and health professionals. It is a not-for-profit organisation committed to promoting excellence and innovation in the European healthcare field with the goal of improving the health and well-being of all European citizens.