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Brussels, 12 June 2019. The European Public Health Alliance (EPHA)’s Policy Manager for Universal Access and Affordable Medicines, Yannis Natsis, has been appointed as a member of the European Medicines Agency (EMA)’s Management Board. Natsis fills in one of two positions reserved to Patients’ organisations over a three-year period starting from 15 June 2019.

The appointment of Yannis Natsis have been warmly welcomed by the EPHA management and Board. “We are very pleased with the appointment of Yannis Natsis to the EMA Management Board. EPHA has been continuously contributing to the work of the Patient and Consumer Working Party (PCWP) of the EMA since its establishment, and we see this as a recognition of EPHA’s strong access to medicines advocacy and credibility.” noted Freek Spinnewijn, President of EPHA. “We convene and represent the diverse voices of both patients and health professionals, and look forward to working with the other appointed Patients’ organisation, the European Patients’ Forum (EPF), to guarantee better and affordable medicines for all in Europe.”

“My appointment to this prestigious Board sends a clear message to multiple recipients.” commented Natsis on a note thanking Member States and EPHA. “With their votes, EU governments are paving the way for a more balanced representation of patients on the Board of the EMA. For the patient voice to be heard and respected, we need to prioritise our independence, critical thinking and not shy away from the real questions”.

The appointment comes at a critical time for the access to medicines debate in Europe.

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