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Source: European Parliament

Article 168 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) confers health policy competences on the Union, one of its objectives being to protect citizens from threats to health by improving surveillance and preparedness for epidemics. To this end, there are specialised agencies, such as the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), and a multitude of mechanisms for joint cooperation, coordination, exchange and transmission of information (among agencies, Member States, World Health Organisation and others) to address threats jointly and in a coordinated manner. The EU has developed an extensive intergovernmental organisation and has, inter alia, the Early Warning and Response System at its disposal. On 2 January 2020, as part of the action on the coronavirus, the WHO activated the incident management system at the three existing levels: national offices, regional offices and WHO headquarters.

Given that the Commission has been aware since then that the coronavirus represented a serious cross-border threat to health, and in light of Decision 1082/2013/EU:

1. What information did it provide the Member States with and what information did it request from them and on what dates?

2. What information did the Commission receive from the Spanish Ministry of Health’s early warning system and when?

3. When were the Health Security Committee (HSC) and Committee on Serious Cross-border Threats to Health (Decision 1082/2013/EU, Articles 17 and 18) convened, with what objectives, and what were the conclusions drawn?

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