Postponement of EU Health directive "major victory for advocates of universal health coverage"

{{Out of touch Commission makes major miscalculation
on healthcare proposals}}
{PRESS RELEASE, 19 December, 2007, Brussels} The decision by the European Commission to postpone the publication of the draft directive on Cross-Border Healthcare, until spring 2008, represents a major victory for advocates of universal healthcare coverage throughout the EU. Commenting on this embarrassing climb-down by the Commission, EPSU General Secretary Carola Fischbach-Pyttel stated that; {{“the draft proposal produced by the Commission was simply unacceptable. Unacceptable to health workers, professionals, managers, interest groups and particularly to patients”. She added that; “One has to wonder how out of touch this Commission has to be to make such a miscalculation in a vital area like healthcare ”}}. The Commission's decision to postpone was only made this morning - at the last possible moment. That they have decided to postpone publication in such a way, is a clear illustration of the political pressure that healthcare advocates have brought to bear. A press conference scheduled today by Health Commissioner {{Markos KYPRIANOU}} was cancelled, and Internal Market Commissioner {{Charlie McCREEVEY}} is notable by his absence from the debate, despite DG Internal Market being jointly responsible for the text. EPSU will continue to work with affiliates and allies, in 2008, to ensure that any healthcare proposal is built from the foundation of universality, solidarity accessibility and equality.
-ends- {{For further information, please contact:}}

{{Tamara Goosens +32 2 250 10 80, [>]}}
{{Brian Synnott +32 474 98 96 75, [>]}}
{"{{EPSU}} is the {{European Federation of Public Service Unions}}. It is the largest federation of the ETUC. 8 million public service workers from over 200 trade unions are members. They organise workers in the energy, water and waste sectors, health and social services and local and national administration"}

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