To EHMA Members and the EHMA Community
Brexit: I am sure this will not be the first comment on the decision of the British public to leave the European Union, but I felt it appropriate to give you an initial reaction from EHMA as it relates to our operations going forward.
The first point to make is that as a Belgium registered not for profit organisation there will be no structural impact of Brexit, nor will there be any consequence for our UK member organisations.
Looking at the impact of Brexit on the work programme of EHMA, this is evidently going to be affected by the outcome of the Article 50 negotiations and in particularly whether the UK remains in the European Economic Area (EEA) or seeks to negotiate a set of bilateral arrangements based upon the principle of mutual recognition. For EHMA we will continue to be able to be fully involved in the health policy process and involvement in European Commission funded projects.
Given the limited competency of the European Commission within health services there is likely to be limited impact in terms of operational work programmes, whereas regulation is likely to be impacted, most notably within the area of employment rights such as the Working Time Directive and within medicinal products with the Pharmaceuticals Directive. This could have some impact on the manner in which EHMA seeks to support knowledge transfer and training, but we believe any impact will be limited.
Where Brexit is also likely to impact on EHMA Members is firstly in relation to academic colleagues, with research funding being a particular area of concern. The future involvement of the UK within the Erasmus Programme could also be brought into question. Overall it would appear likely that whist ongoing partnership will continue, the flow of research funding from the EU to the UK could be significantly reduced. EHMA will do whatever it can to help mitigate any impact on effective partnership working.
For EHMA we feel that this is an important time to reiterate our commitment to the benefit of pan-European working within the field of health management and we will continue to work with all our members to these ends.
We will also provide further updates as matters become clearer.
Usman Khan, Interim Director at EHMA