View our selection of links. They feature websites presenting global, regional and national initiatives and strategies on public health and social well-being, and websites of selected organisations and institutions.
EUROPEAN UNION STRATEGY FOR THE BALTIC SEA REGION
EUSBSR in brief
The European Union Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region (EUSBSR) aims to address a selected range of challenges faced by the region, among them considerable disparities in health conditions, escalating environmental threats, gaps in economic development and lack of properly connected transportation links. These challenges are obstacles that prevent development in the region.
The EUSBSR Strategy is accompanied by the EUSBSR Action Plan, comprising 13 Policy Areas, including "Health", and four Horizontal Actions, which represent the main areas where the EUSBSR can contribute to improvements. The Action Plan is updated regularly as the region and its context develops. The Action Plan defines three overall objectives:
- Save the Sea;
- Connect the Region;
- Increase Prosperity.
The Policy Area “Health” focuses on improving and promoting the health of people in the Baltic Sea region, including social aspects of health, as an important precondition for ensuring sustainable and healthy societies enjoying economic growth, and for containing future health and social care-related costs.
The NDPHS is the Policy Area Coordinator for “Health” in the EUSBSR.
Six main health-related actions have been included in the EUSBSR Action Plan (latest revised in mid-2015):
- Reduce the impact of HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and associated infections among populations at risk;
- Contain antimicrobial resistance;
- Adequately address health needs of chronically ill patients and needs related to demographic changes;
- Reduce impact of non-communicable diseases (NCDs);
- Reduce social and health harm from alcohol, tobacco and illicit use of drugs;
- Strengthen occupational safety and health and well-being at work.
The Strategy: (i) does not imply any additional funding; (ii) relies on a coordinating and synergy of a large number of people and organisations, and (iii) strives for a more effective use of the already existing EU instruments and funds, as well as other existing resources and financial instruments, and EU policies and programmes.
Geographically, the EUSBSR covers eight EU Member States bordering the Baltic Sea. However, in order to jointly tackle many of the regional challenges, close cooperation with external partners – among them Norway and Russia - is particularly important.
The roles and responsibilities of the implementing stakeholders of the Strategy are described in the EUSBSR Action Plan. The success of the Strategy depends on the involvement of all relevant stakeholders, therefore it is important that stakeholders on the local and regional level are involved, when relevant (read more here about how you become involved).
To translate the agreed EUSBSR objectives into results, there are detailed actions and flagship projects. Actions represent the main steps that are needed to achieve the agreed indicators and targets for a given area, while flagship projects detail how to achieve (part of) the desired outcome.
The overall Policy Area "Health" goal is to reduce premature avoidable loss of human capital and is measuring its success through the ‘potential years of life lost’ (PYLL) indicator. The targets until 2020 are:
- 10% reduction in premature avoidable mortality (PYLL) in the Baltic Sea Region/Northern Dimension Area;
- 10% reduction in the difference between the lowest (best) and highest (worst) PYLL rates for women and men among the Baltic Sea Region/Northern Dimension Area.
As the Policy Area Coordinator for “Health” in the EUSBSR the NDPHS provides assistance to stakeholders interested in contributing to this Policy Area in:
- Fostering macro-regional cooperation in the public health area and making it more integrated and inclusive (by strengthening and expanding existing networks, creating new networks and encouraging new stakeholders to get involved in regional health cooperation);
- Identifying potential sources of financing for activities contributing to the implementation of the Strategy (e.g., by organising seminars on project development and funding, providing information on the NDPHS website and via individual consultations);
- Fostering macro-regional cooperation in policy shaping (e.g., by promoting the concept of policy-to-project-to-policy cycle to raise the awareness among project developers of the importance of meeting policy needs and among policy-makers of the need to take project outcomes into account when developing or reshaping policies);
- Development and facilitation of, and support to regional flagships contributing to the implementation of the Strategy (e.g., by supporting stakeholders in project development and fund-raising, assisting in looking for projects partners, providing letters of support);
- Increased visibility and recognition of importance of health on the regional cooperation agenda (e.g., by strengthening the understanding of the importance of health and social well-being for other policy areas and economic development);
As a Policy Area Coordinator the NDPHS has received a third technical assistance grant financed by the European Union through the Interreg Baltic Sea Region Programme 2014-2020. The grant aims supporting the NDPHS work in coordination and implementation of activities within the Health Policy Area of the EUSBSR Action Plan. The grant is funding a two-year project "PA Health support 3" running until 30 September 2020.
Stakeholders interested in receiving the above or another type of support within the EUSBSR context are invited to contact the NDPHS Secretariat.