DIRECTORATE-GENERAL FOR HEALTH AND FOOD SAFETY
Public health, country knowledge, crisis management
Crisis management and preparedness in health
Luxembourg, 22 April 2020
Health Security Committee
Audio meeting on the outbreak of COVID-19
Chair: Wolfgang Philipp, SANTE C3
Audio participants: AT; BE; BG; CY;CZ; DE; DK; EE; ES; FI; FR; HR; HU; IE; IT; LT; LV; MT; NL; NO; PL; PT; SE; SI; SK; CH; RS; UK, DG SANTE, DG ECHO, DG MOVE; ECDC; EASA; CHAFEA; WHO
The Health Security Committee (HSC) continued to exchange information on exit strategies, focusing on public health/technical aspects in view of the Joint European Roadmap1.
AT, BE, CY, DE, DK, EE, FR, IT, NL, SE, NO, and UK informed on de-escalation measures, epidemiological criteria and plans for lifting social distancing measures. Updates from countries were shared in writing.
The HSC agreed to further discuss parameters for de-escalation or reescalation, monitoring impacts and effectiveness of measures, upscaling testing capacities, use of apps and roll-out across the population, as well as approaches to ensure capacities in other non-COVID related healthcare services.
- The HSC continues to exchange on the above topics; updates will also be shared in writing.
- The HSC agreed to share guidelines for reopening certain businesses, including on personal protection for specific professions.
AOB: BE asked for an update regarding the question of case definition for mortality reporting discussed at previous HSC meetings.
The summary of replies from countries was circulated to the HSC. The ECDC is in collaboration with its networks in Member States has been working on questions related to the case definition for mortality reporting, in line with WHO case definition.
- Information from ECDC will be shared with the HSC.
The Commission provided an update on the activities of the Communicators’ Network, convened five times during the pandemic to support the coordination of risk communication.
The ComNet discussed topics such as travel advice, common templates for information flyers/leaflets, communication to vulnerable groups, advice on the use of masks, social media and disinformation, as well as shared guidelines
and communication materials. Considering the current low level of engagement and participation by countries, the HSC was asked for comments on the usefulness of the Network, in view of further maintenance during the current phase of the pandemic.
- The Commission asked the HSC to come forth with proposals for further area of support within the ComNet.
- The maintenance of the Network will be decided after the next meeting.