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Table 1 Timeline of main developments in EU health policy

From: Twentieth anniversary of the European Union health mandate: taking stock of perceived achievements, failures and missed opportunities – a qualitative study

Year EU health policy developments before the introduction of a legal EU health mandate
1957 Treaty of Rome: health is not a priority. Two aspects are considered: social security of cross-border workers and occupational health.
1971 Regulation (EEC) 1408/71 on the application of social security schemes to employed persons and their families moving within the community (accompanied by implementing Regulation (EEC) No 574/72).
1985 EC launches the action programme “Europe against Cancer”.
1993 Maastricht treaty: the legal basis for undertaking actions in the field of public health is defined in Article 3(o) and Article 129.
Year EU health policy developments after the introduction of a legal EU health mandate by the Maastricht Treaty
1995 The European Agency for the Evaluation of Medicinal Products (EMEA), now European Medicines Agency (EMA), has been formed in London.
1997 Treaty of Amsterdam: Health Impact Assessment is implemented.
1999 Directorate General for Health and Consumers (DG SANCO) is established.
2000 Lisbon Agenda recognizes health protection as a prerequisite for economic growth measured with the indicator Healthy Life Years.
2002 The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has been established in Parma.
2002 First Programme of Community action in the field of public health (2003-2008) launched.
2003 The Tobacco Advertising Directive 2003/ 33/EC is adopted after the first version has been annulled by the European Court of Justice.
2004 Commission decision to set up an Executive Agency for the public health programme. It has the task to manage community action in the field of public health.
2005 The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) in Stockholm is operational.
2007 White paper: Together for health: a strategic approach for the EU 2008-2013.
2007 Decision for a second Programme of Community action in the field of health (2008-13).
2011 Directive 2011/24/EU on the application of patients’ rights in cross-border healthcare has been adopted.