SFEE meeting with patient associations:
Shared goal a patient-centred and sustainable healthcare system
Athens, 23 April 2021 – A virtual meeting held on Wednesday, 21 April, between the Hellenic Association of Pharmaceutical Companies and representatives of patient associations highlighted the shared goal of a patient-centred and sustainable public healthcare system. Participants included the President, members of the Board of Directors and other officers of SFEE, executives of SFEE member companies and twenty-two (22) representatives of patient associations.
SFEE representatives provided an overview of developments in pharmaceutical policy, various current issues, the evolution of pharmaceutical expenditure, as well as the European pharmaceutical policy and the Association’s strategy. They also underscored the important role of patient associations, which are at the heart of all the activities of the pharmaceutical industry, and advocated the need for a new healthcare policy, involving patients as vital partners.
The representatives of patient associations pointed out the many problems of the chronically ill, the fact that due to the COVID-19 pandemic many patients have failed to keep up with their follow-up tests and checks and the urgent need to implement reforms for a sustainable health system. Finally, they recognised the key role of SFEE in communication and cooperation between the pharmaceutical industry and patients.
In the closed web meeting, the representatives both of patient associations and of the pharmaceutical industry stressed the need to exchange views and ideas, to establish channels of two-way communication and to strengthen this communication.
The President of the Hellenic Patients’ Association, Ms. Katerina Koutsogianni, noted that “The health burden of the pandemic is not limited to COVID-19 cases, but extends to the management of chronic diseases and patients’ limited access to the healthcare system. The day after will require the cooperation of all partners in order to redesign the National Health System on the solid pillars of universality, quality and sustainability. It is with this focus on patients and citizens that the cooperation of the national confederation of patient associations with SFEE has developed over time”.
The President of the Hellenic Cancer Federation (ELLOK), Ms. Kaiti Apostolidou, stated: “The meeting with patient associations organised by SFEE is an opportunity to hear from colleagues about the effects of the pandemic on chronic diseases, but also on the work of associations, and to be informed of developments in pharmaceutical and health policy at the national and European level.”
The President of SFEE, Mr. Olympios Papadimitriou, noted: “Patient associations are one of the most important partners for the pharmaceutical industry. Patient associations and the pharmaceutical industry need to be in constant communication, with full transparency and trust, with patients’ complete independence in decision-making and policies, and with mutual respect, in order to promote the development of new medicinal products, optimise therapeutic outcomes and maximise the benefit to patients.”