IDF Europe welcomes the European Parliament's recent vote to update the EU General Pharmaceutical Legislation.

11 April 2024

IDF Europe welcomes the European Parliament’s recent vote to update the EU General Pharmaceutical Legislation. This important step holds the promise of improved access to medicines contributing to better health outcomes and quality of life for people living with chronic conditions, including diabetes, and emphasises the importance of involving people with lived experience throughout these medicines’ development process.

  • The introduction of a new definition of “Unmet Medical Needs” reiterates the necessity of taking into account the needs, experiences and challenges of people living with chronic diseases.  
  • IDF Europe strongly encourages the Council of the EU to champion this inclusive definition, reflecting the real challenges of Europeans with long-term conditions, and calls for united action from all European policymakers to maintain this momentum in the coming months.

The recent legislative reform is a landmark achievement in crafting a comprehensive “Unmet Medical Needs” (UMN) framework, vital for advancing diabetes care. The new recital 50a expands UMN to consider quality of life, disease and treatment burdens, as well as daily activity impacts, emphasising patient experience data in UMN assessments, with the linked enhanced regulatory data protection supporting the need for more innovation.

This is all the more vital that there is an urgent need for innovation in diabetes prevention and management. Despite progress over recent years, the prevalence of diabetes keeps increasing and more than 50% of people living with diabetes do not meet their glycaemic targets, placing them at a higher risk of developing diabetes-related complications. This gap highlights the inadequacy of current treatments and prevention strategies.

To bridge this gap, IDF Europe champions a comprehensive UMN definition that captures the entire spectrum of diabetes prevention and care needs, from new medication development to the improvement of early intervention measures and life quality enhancements. This proposal seeks to prompt a healthcare framework that not only confronts current issues but is also future-proof, making effective diabetes prevention and care universally accessible and effective.

The Path Forward:

Looking to the future, IDF Europe calls on the Council of the EU to embrace this approach. By doing so, we can collectively ensure that the revised legislation not only addresses but anticipates the needs of Europeans living with chronic conditions, including diabetes, leading to a future where healthcare is not only accessible and affordable but deeply attuned to the needs of its recipients.

Elisabeth Dupont, Regional Director of IDF Europe, said, “This milestone marks a dedication of European policymakers to rethinking healthcare in Europe, focusing on patient involvement and innovation to address unmet medical needs. It signals a shift towards a healthcare system that values patient experiences, preferences and needs. We urge the Council of the European Union and the European Parliament to work jointly in the coming months to sustain this progress.”

IDF Europe remains dedicated to advocating for these changes to be recognised and implemented by European institutions and national member states. Our vision is clear: to create a healthcare environment that is responsive, and person-centred. Together, we stand on the brink of a transformative journey, one that promises to redefine European healthcare for the better.