We are well into the new year 2014 and it promises to be a very interesting one for Europe. Politicians, policy-makers and European citizens are increasingly getting into the mood for campaigning, gearing up for the May elections.
This does not mean Europe is on hold until then, on the contrary, discussions on health, R&D, innovation and sustainable healthcare systems continue at both national and European level. A lot can happen in a month, let's look back at our favourite developments of February.
1. World Cancer Day celebrated across the globe
The 4th of February marked World Cancer Day. This year, discussions focused on "debunking the myths" with an aim to provide answers to the many misconceptions that exist with regard to cancer. All over the world events took place to raise awareness; we even participated in our first ever Twitter Chat hosted by the European Cancer Patient Coalition (ECPC). Read more about the various events and about Lilly's work in oncology in our World Cancer Day blog.
2. LillyPadEU counting down to the European Elections #EP2014
On 7 February, LillyPadEU joined the campaign trail by starting the 100 day countdown to 22 May 2014. In our kick off blog here we outline our vision on Health and Growth for Europe. Over the next couple of months leading up to the European elections, we will be running a series of blogs aimed at the new parliamentary intake. In the series we will build the case for a more ambitious and integrated life science strategy in the EU that sets clear priorities for policy-makers, industry and others working in the healthcare sector. We believe this will not only deliver better health outcomes for European citizens, but also support financially sustainable healthcare systems, and achieve economic growth in Europe. Follow the developments via #EP2014 and #HealthandGrowth
3. Alzheimer Europe gains support for its #EUDementiaPledge
European umbrella organisation Alzheimer Europe raises Dementia as a European priority in the run up to the European elections. (Candidate) Members of the European Parliament (MEP) are encouraged to express their support for this cause via this form and via the use of the hashtag #EUDementiaPledge. By signing up to the pledge MEPs indicate their willingness to join the Alzheimer's Alliance in the European Parliament once elected. If you haven't done so, check it out! #EUDementiaPledge
4. EU & US negotiators take stock on #TTIP progress
A stocktaking exercise of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations took place mid-February. So far, three negotiation rounds have taken place, setting out the scope of the agreement, and agreeing the overall direction of travel. Round four is set to take place from 10-14 March and will focus on the more technical details of the trade agreement. Read our blog to learn more about our key priorities for health and the biopharmaceutical industry.
5. The fight against fake medicines continues
Counterfeit drugs remain one of the biggest threats to adequate health care across the globe. It is said that 100,000 people die each year because of counterfeits. In a LillyPadEU guest blog, our Lilly colleague Bill Reid explains the challenge that counterfeit drugs pose to the delivery of healthcare, and what measures are currently being taken to combat counterfeiters. The International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations (IFPMA) recently launched an important new partnership designed to protect people from being harmed by fake medicines - called Fight the Fakes.