Communication on availability of medicines

EESC opinion: Communication on availability of medicines

On 24 October 2023 the European Commission adopted a set of actions to better prevent and mitigate critical medicine shortages in the EU. Recent critical shortages, including of certain antibiotics last winter, show that continued coordinated action is needed to address supply challenges and to make Europe's medicine supply chains more resilient in the long run. The main objective of the Communication is to prevent and mitigate critical shortages at EU level, focusing in particular on the most critical medicines, for which security of supply in the EU must be ensured at all times.

This Communication builds on the work under the European Health Union, notably the reinforced mandate of the European Medicines Agency and the recently published pharmaceutical reform. It follows a strong call by Member States at the 2023 June European Council, confirmed in Granada in October 2023, and from the European Parliament.