In a significant step toward promoting health equity and improving people’s health, WHO/Europe and the European Public Health Alliance (EPHA) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to enhance their partnership. EPHA, as Europe’s leading NGO alliance advocating for better health for all, will work closely with WHO/Europe to address key health challenges and drive positive change.
With 80 member organizations representing diverse groups including civil society organizations, health professionals and public health actors, EPHA’s serves as a change agent. It does this by facilitating its member’s participation, collating their perspectives, and contributing them to European policy dialogues. Since its foundation 30 years ago, EPHA has grown into the EU’s largest civil society platform of organizations working together to protect and improve public health in Europe. In doing so it aligns with WHO’s European Programme of Work and its goal of achieving the highest possible level of health, sustainable development, and prosperity for all. The newly agreed collaboration between WHO/Europe and EPHA aims to contribute to WHO/Europe’s initiatives in health promotion, health equity, and investment for health and well-being.
“We are proud to be signing this agreement with EPHA, a well-known voice for public health across Europe,” said WHO Regional Director Dr Hans Henri P. Kluge. “Together, we will build on our past work and move forward, focusing on intelligence and information sharing, joint advocacy for health, and stronger connections of health stakeholders across Europe.”
Signed on 30 June 2023 at a ceremony attended by Dr Kluge and EPHA Director-General Dr Milka Sokolovic, the MoU will see the two organizations sharing knowledge and information, amplifying each other’s work and contributions to better health, while connecting European stakeholders across the public health sector.
Intelligence and information sharing will be a crucial aspect of the partnership, particularly within the EU context.
This MoU is a recognition of a long-standing relationship between WHO Europe and EPHA, with many examples of past cooperation. It is also more than a mere formalization of our collaboration, as it opens a whole new chapter in our joint work to ultimately benefit the health of all.
The sharing of knowledge will also play an important role in the new partnership. On one hand, EPHA will leverage its collaboration with WHO/Europe, networks, and partners to develop and share innovative solutions and expertise. WHO/Europe will in turn actively engage in relevant initiatives and platforms involving civil society, academia, and the European Union to enhance knowledge exchange and collaboration in health.
The signing of this MoU formalizes a long-standing partnership between WHO/Europe and EPHA and marks a significant milestone in the journey towards better health and well-being in Europe. By leveraging the strengths and expertise of both WHO/Europe and EPHA, this partnership promises to drive systemic changes and reduce health inequalities, ultimately leading to a healthier future for all people and the planet.