EUCOPE webinar: Making Cross-Border Healthcare for ATMPs in Rare Diseases a Reality

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Accessing healthcare across national borders has been a long-standing issue for people with rare diseases.
The primary reason for this is that these patients live across Europe, but – due to the rarity of these diseases – the clinical expertise tends to be concentrated in certain countries only. This issue of cross-border healthcare is challenging in Europe due to the organisation of healthcare systems and reimbursement of treatments at the national level. With the emergence of highly innovative therapies such as cell and gene therapy, this challenge became even bigger, as these therapies are often provided by specialised treatment centres, that are not available in all countries.
The European framework for planned cross-border healthcare, consisting of Social Security Regulation 883/2004 and 987/2009 and Directive 2011/24 EU, allows patients to access treatment across Europe (EU/European Economic Area/Switzerland). Whilst this framework works reasonably well for routine health operations, they are not adequately assisting patients seeking access to highly innovative treatments such as cell and gene therapies.
While awaiting structural revisions of European legislation to address this issue on the long term, different proposals and frameworks are being explored. In this vein, Hict, commissioned by PTC Therapeutics and Orchard Therapeutics, undertook a project to assess what concrete steps could be taken within each individual Member States, to enable access to innovative treatments abroad. Based on this assessment performed in collaboration with different stakeholders, concrete gaps were identified and solutions to tackle these issues were extensively explored.

During this webinar,scheduled for June 26th  from 1 to 2.30pm CEST, HICT will present the challenges and possible solutions that were identified to better operationalise the cross-border healthcare framework in the context of innovative therapies. A panel will reflect on the solutions presented by Hict, and share their own reflections on how to make the cross-border deliver of cell and gene therapies, where needed, a reality in the EU.


  • Amber Werbrouck, HICT
  • Jo De Cock, Former General Administrator, RIZIV/INAMI
  • Matt Bolz-Johnson, EURORDIS-Rare Disease Europe
  • Thomas Bols, PTC Therapeutics
  • Maria Pia Cicalese, Università San Raffaele
Moderated by Victor Maertens, Government Affairs Director, EUCOPE.
If you have any questions about the Life Science Lectures series, please reach out to Stefano Romanelli (romanelli(at)
More info about EUCOPE can be found here.
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