The situation on COVID-19 is rapidly evolving and EHMA is actively monitoring the updates from local, national and international officials.
What is COVID-19 and what are the symptoms
COVID-19 is an infectious disease caused by the novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2). Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that
cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe disease.
People can catch COVID-19 from others who have the virus through inhaling small droplets from infected people who cough or sneeze or through touching contaminated surfaces and then touching nose, mouth or eyes.
Most people who become infected experience mild illness and recover, but for some, it can be more severe. The symptoms include a
combination of fever, cough, difficulty breathing, muscle pain, and tiredness.
Illness due to infection is generally mild, especially for children and young adults. It mostly affects the elderly and those with other underlying conditions. Please note, even if you have mild or no symptoms, you can still contaminate others.
If you have symptoms, call the emergency number or phone the nearest emergency department and describe your symptoms. They will tell you the procedure to follow.
Do not go to the doctor or hospital. You could infect other people.
COVID-19 and the EU
The EU council and member states are taking the necessary steps to act accordingly. On 10 March 2020, they identified 4 priorities in the disease response:
- Limiting the spread of the virus with measures that are based on science and medical advice and that are proportionate to the situation in which they are taken.
- Provision of medical equipment. The Commission will identify initiatives to prevent shortages, particularly for masks and respirators.
- Promotion of research, including for a vaccine. Emphasis was placed on reinforcing research efforts.
- Tackling socio-economic consequences. The Union and its member states will particularly address the impact on liquidity, on support for SME’s and specific affected sectors, and their employees.
On Wednesday, 11 March 2020, the WHO officially declared COVID-19, a pandemic. Different member states have taken measures, such as closing schools, universities and restraining some or most business activities in an attempt to reduce the spread of the virus. The Commission and ECDC also released an information leaflet for the citizens.
On March 19, 2020, the European Commission created the first ever an rescEU stockpile of medical equipment.
Updates on the latest information regarding the COVID-19 outbreak can be found on the following websites:
For more information:
Research and Innovation
Through the Horizon 2020 programme, the European Commission has very rapidly mobilised new funds for research through two special calls for research projects that will address the full spectrum of needs: understanding the disease, diagnosis, vaccines, treatment and preparedness. More information here.
On March 20, 2020, the WHO announced a large global trial, called SOLIDARITY, to find out if any can treat infections with the new coronavirus for the dangerous respiratory disease. It’s an unprecedented effort—an all-out, coordinated push to collect robust scientific data rapidly during a pandemic. The study, which could include many thousands of patients in dozens of countries, has been designed to be as simple as possible so that even hospitals overwhelmed by an onslaught of COVID-19 patients can participate. More information here.
- The Associação Portuguesa de Administradores Hospitalares (APAH) and Ordem dos Médicos (OM) will host a webinar aimed at all the Boards of Directors and health professionals in hospitals and other entities involved in the response to Covid-19. The webinar is free and will take place on March 24, 2020 (3.30 PM Lison time) and will be dedicated to the “Organization of Intensive Care Medicine”. For more information and to register, please click here.
National information for all European countries on COVID-19*
|Austria||Federal Ministry Republic of Austria: Social Affairs, Health, Care and Consumer Protection Federal||sozialministerium.at||(+43) 800 555 621|
|Belgium||Federal Public Service: Health, Food Chain Safety and Environment||info-coronavirus.be||(+32) 800 14689|
|Bulgaria||Ministry of Health||mh.government.bg||(+359) 2 807 87 57|
|Croatia||Croatian Institute of Public Health||hzjz.hr||(+385) 91 468 30 32; (+385) 99 468 30 01|
|Cyprus||Ministry of Health||moh.gov.cy||(+357) 1420|
|Czechia||Ministry of Health||mzcr.cz||(+420) 724 810 106; (+420) 725 191 367|
|Denmark||Danish Health Authority||sst.dk||(+45) 72 22 74 59|
|Estonia||Ministry of Social Affairs||koroonaviirus.ee||(+372) 634 6630; 1220|
|Finland||Finnish institute for health and welfare||thl.fi||(+358) 295 535 535|
|France||Government of the French Republic||gouvernement.fr||(+33) 800 130 000|
|Germany||Federal Ministry of Health||bundesgesundheitsministerium.de||(+49) 30 346 465 100|
|Greece||National Public Health Institute of Greece||eody.gov.gr/||(+30) 210 521 2054|
|Hungary||Hungarian Government||koronavirus.gov.hu||(+36) 80 277 455; (+36) 80 277 456|
|Iceland||Directorate of Health||landlaeknir.is||(+353) 1850 24 1850**|
|Ireland||Health Service Executive||hse.ie||(+353) 1850 24 1850**|
|Italy||Ministry of Health||salute.gov.it||(+39) 1500|
|Latvia||Centre for the Prevention and Control of Diseases||spkc.gov.lv||(+371) 67387661|
|Liechtenstein||Government of Liechtenstein||regierung.li/coronavirus||(+423) 230 30 30|
|Lithuania||Ministry of Health||sam.lrv.lt||(+370) 8 618 79984|
|Luxembourg||Ministry of Health||msan.gouvernement.lu||(+352) 8002 8080|
|Malta||Government of Malta||deputyprimeminister.gov.mt||(+356) 21324086|
|Netherlands||National Institute for Public Health and the Environment||rivm.nl||(+31) 800-1351|
|Norway||Norwegian Institute of Public Health||fhi.no||(+47) 815 55 015|
|Poland||Government of Poland||gov.pl (PL)
|(+48) 800 190 590|
|Portugal||Ministry of Health||dgs.pt/corona-virus||(+351) 808 24 24 24|
|Romania||Ministry of Health||ms.ro||(+40) 800 800 358|
|Slovakia||Public Health Authority of the Slovak Republic||uvzsr.sk||(+421) 917 222 682|
|Slovenia||Government of Slovenia||gov.si||(+386) 31 646 617, 080 1404**|
|Spain||Government of Spain||mscbs.gob.es||See regional numbers: https://bit.ly/2VOt0zs|
|Sweden||Public Health Agency of Sweden||folkhalsomyndigheten.se||(+46) 113 13|
|Switzerland||Federal Office of Public Health||bag.admin.ch/novel-cov||(+41) 58 463 00 00|
|UK||Government of UK||gov.uk||111** (dialled from UK)|
* Information retrieved from ECDC.
* * numbers dialled only from the respective country