Last Tuesday 31st of May the first European Parliament Interest Group on Biomedical Engineering (EPIG on BME)” was launched in the Euro Parliament. This was the result of a long collaboration between the European Alliance of Medical and Biological Engineering (EAMBES), the International Federation for Medical and Biological Engineering (IFMBE) and 3 MPs, Ms Lara Comi (EPP, Italy), Mr Nicola Caputo (S&D, Italy) and Jens Gieseke (EPP, Germany). The University of Warwick, and particularly the School of Warwick WEB had a key role in this. Not only because Dr Leandro Pecchia coordinated the organization of this event as Chairman of the IFMBE HTA Division and of the Public Affair Wof Working Group of the EAMBES but also because the university of Warwick hosted the pre-meeting event in the morning (photo 1). The agenda consisted in three main action points that Dr Pecchia presented in his talk at the Euro Parliament, which are: 1) to act on the European Commission and Minister Council to insert BME in the next revision of the Professional Qualifications Directive, otherwise patient safety in hospital would remain uncertain and procurement not cost-effective; 2) to act on the European Commission to be sure BME are involved in Medical Devices Coordination Groups; 3) to act on the European Commission to recognize BME as an independent research area in Horizon 2020. In the next days, Dr Pecchia, which has been invited to join the secretariat of the EPIG on BME, will work with Mr Caputo in order to prepare 3 letters to be sent to the Commission regarding these three action points. The next meeting of the EPIG on BME will be in November 2016, in order to monitor progress and plan the next actions.
Photo 1: Morning session at the University of Warwick office in Bruxelles (from left: prof Birgit Glasmacher, EAMBES Past President, dr Leandro Pecchia, IFMBE HTAD Chairman and PAWG EAMBES Chairman, prof Ratko Majarevich, IFMBE Past President, Adriana Velazquez, Director WHO Medical Device Unit, Edgardo Iozia, European Economic and Social Committee, prof Shankar Krishnan, IFMBE Elected President, dr Andrel Linnenbank, EMABES General Secretary, prof Jary Hyttinen, EAMBES president, prof Heinrich Schima, EAMBES Fellow Chair, prof Nicolas Pallikarakis, IFMBE HTAD past-Chair).