Opening up medical data for an ethical and efficient EU policy

MEP Margrete Auken (Greens/EFA)

MEP Peter Liese (EPP)

MEP Christel Schaldemose (S&D)


Opening up medical research data for an ethical and efficient EU policy

Wednesday 6 June 2012

Member´s salon private dining room, European Parliament

12:30 – 14:00

Crucial information about many medicines are kept secret. In consequence, doctors can face difficulty in choosing the safest and most effective treatment for their patients.  Is it ethical and efficient for the EU to allow essential medical research data to be shrouded in secrecy? Can the health of EU citizens be effectively protected with very little or insufficient access to clinical trial data concerning the safety and secondary effects of a drug?

As Director of the the Nordic Cochrane Center, Dr. Peter Gøtzsche states: “If commercial or academic success depends on withholding data that is important for rational decision making by physicians, patients and governments then there is something fundamentally wrong with our priorities in health care.”  

As the European Parliament considers the EU´s framework programme for research and innovation, Horizon 2020, and will soon discuss the EU´s Clinical Trial Directive, European lawmakers have a unique opportunity to lead the way toward opening up health-sensitive research data with the aim of ending wasteful repetition and the promotion of scientific transparency. More and more voices in the scientific community feel that data sharing would lead to tremendous benefits for patients, progress in science, and far more rational use of healthcare resources based on evidence we can trust.

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Organised with support from

Trans-Atlantic Consumer Dialogue and Health Action International Europe