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Source: European Parliament

Article 168 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union gives the EU certain responsibilities in health policy, one objective being to protect citizens from threats to their health. Agencies and procedures exist to ensure cooperation, coordination and exchange of information (ECDC, states, WHO and others).

In its daily report of 24 January on COVID-19, the World Health Organization (WHO) confirmed human-to-human transmission of the virus with a R0 estimate of 1.4-2.5, and also set some strategic response objectives to interrupt its transmission, recommending the adoption of a combination of public health measures and measures to raise public awareness and inform them of the risks. On 30 January, it declared that the outbreak was a ‘public health emergency of international concern’, and reported that it was still possible to interrupt virus spread providing countries implemented strong measures to detect disease early, isolate and treat cases, trace contacts and promote social distancing measures commensurate with the risk.

I hereby pose the following questions to the Commission, in accordance with its remit, concerning the measures designed to interrupt the spread of the virus:

1. What specific actions did the EU take and communicate to the Member States, what did these consist of and when did this happen?

2. Were recommendations passed on to the Member States? When, to whom and what were they?

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