Europe is facing health challenges that investment can help tackle. There are significant health inequalities across the EU and differing levels of healthcare provision. Although the overall population is ageing, life expectancy at birth varies by nine years between Member States for women and 13 years for men, and infant mortality rates also vary. Investment in health also tends to be much lower in the new EU Member States; Estonia, for example, invests just 5.5% of GDP on health compared to 11% in Germany.
The key role of Structural Funds is to reduce regional economic and social disparities, and thereby contribute to ensuring healthy lives for all European citizens. Tackling the health gaps, particularly in those regions lagging behind, will help to reduce such regional disparities.
So, we ask, in the era of personalised healthcare, how can structural funds better facilitate access to better and innovative care?