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Issue 2 - April 2021


Dear reader,

During the statutory meetings in March, I was elected as Secretary General of HOSPEEM by the members of the General Assembly for a mandate period until December 2021. In my quality as ARAN representative, founder Member of HOSPEEM, I strongly believe in the key role of social dialogue in the health sector at the national and EU level. I am grateful for the support expressed by members and I look forward to actively representing members' interests. This spring brought another change to our organisation, and I am pleased to welcome Zorgnet-Icuro, the Flemish network of care organisation, as a full-fledged member of HOSPEEM.

I am pleased to announce that the third regional workshop on Strengthening social dialogue in Croatia, Czechia, Slovakia and Slovenia will take place online on 20 April 2021 and the final dissemination workshop on 16 June 2021. The HOSPEEM-EPSU project on Strengthening Social Dialogue in the hospital sector aims to provide an appropriate framework to address capacity building needs of social partners in 14 targeted countries from 2019 until 2021.

In this edition of the newsletter, you will find information about the recent HOSPEEM activities, news from our members across Europe, and relevant EU News, events, and publications for hospital employers. This newsletter has been conceived as interactive tools to facilitate the flow of communication, therefore you are invited to send us your contributions for future issues.

Enjoy your reading!

Marta Branca
Secretary General of HOSPEEM



SAVE THE DATE - 20 April 2021 - Regional Workshop on Strengthening Social Dialogue in Eastern Europe

The third Regional Workshop of the HOSPEEMEPSU joint project will take place online on 20 April 2021. The workshop is organised by HSSMS-MT (EPSU affiliate, Croatia) and supported by EPSU.
The geographical focus of this third workshop is on Central Europe, specifically targeted at Croatia, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia. Simultaneous interpretation will be provided from and into English, Croatian, Czech and Slovenian. Registration is open until 15 April 2021.

HOSPEEM-EPSU Webinar on MSD in the health sector presentations and video

2021-02-25 MSD Webinar Slider
More than 70 participants attended the webinar on musculoskeletal disorder (MSD), jointly organised by HOSPEEM and EPSU on 25 February 2021. National sectoral social partners from the health sector across Europe exchanged good practices and discussed ideas to prevent MSD at the workplace. The webinar video and all presentations are now available online.

HOSPEEM Secretary General spoke at the high-level roundtable on the Pact for Skills with the health ecosystem

On 16 February, HOSPEEM Secretary General Marta Branca delivered a speech at a high-level round table hosted by Commissioners Schmit, Breton and Kyriakides and organised in the framework of the recent EC Pact for Skills initiative. Ms Branca introduced HOSPEEM’s main activities and actions in the field of digital skills and stressed how the Pact can be a useful tool for sectoral social partners to upscale their initiatives.

HOSPEEM Secretary General spoke at the EESC Hearing on the European Health Union

On 29 March, HOSPEEM Secretary General Marta Branca delivered a speech at the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) public hearing highlighting that "it is essential for social partners to play an active role in discussing the Health Union's future" and "to fully profit from the European Health Union's undertaking and take care of those who take care of us, we have to generate dialogue between all stakeholders' levels."

HOSPEEM-EPSU survey on the implementation of EPSU-HOSPEEM Guidelines on ageing workforce

HOSPEEM-EPSU launched a survey on the implementation of EPSU-HOSPEEM Guidelines and Examples of Good Practice to address the challenges of an ageing workforce in the healthcare sector to gain insights into how the guidelines have been used and implemented. The deadline for national social partners to reply to the survey is open until 3 May 2021.

HOSPEEM Steering Committee and General Assembly in March 2021

HOSPEEM held its Steering Committee and General Assembly on 4 March 2021 via video conference. Sylvie Slangen, Zorgnet-Icuro, Belgium, was appointed as Steering Committee member and the General Assembly.
The HOSPEEM members discussed updates from the HOSPEEM expert groups, the upcoming project on third-party violence, the public consultation of the EU Strategic Framework on OSH and the 2020 Eurofound Representativeness study.

The year 2020 at a glance - HOSPEEM Activity report

2020 has been an eventful year ensuring that the views of hospital and healthcare employers are being heard at the highest level. The HOSPEEM Activity Report 2020 was published and presents the main activities carried out during the year as well as relevant information on the structure and membership of HOSPEEM.

HOSPEEM replies to the European Commission public consultation on the EU Strategic Framework for Occupational Safety and Health (2021 – 2027)

In the joint response to the public consultation, HOSPEEM and SGI Europe stressed that the Framework needs to grasp opportunities and anticipate challenges for working life in constant development, for the common good of employees, employers, citizens, and the operations, for long-term sustainable workplaces and society. It is to consider the role of digitalisation: While it could enhance productivity and create safer work processes', its associated risks need to be assessed. Risks range from mental health due to adaptation to new working methods and increased work-related diseases due to a shift to sedentary work.

Multi-sectoral project on "the role of social partners in preventing third-party violence and harassment at work

TPV project _header
HOSPEEM, EPSU, CEMR, CESI as co-applicants and ETF, ETNO, ETUCE, EUPAE, UITP as associated organisations have been provided with financial support from the European Commission for a joint project in the field of social dialogue: "The role of social partners in preventing third-party violence and harassment at work" in the years 2021, 2022 and 2023.

Consultation on Cross-border healthcare evaluation of patients' rights (Directive 2011/24)

HOSPEEM and EPSU underlined again that the Directive should aim to contribute to the quality and accessibility of patients’ care in February 2021. It was also stated that it is paramount to support Member States to strengthen their national health systems, address the existing challenges and identify opportunities to create resilient health systems to improve patients’ patients' cross-border healthcare access: This includes investment in health workforce and healthcare infrastructure comprising investment in working conditions to address health workforce shortages and medical deserts, access to continued professional development, coherent occupational safety and health prevention practices and guidelines.

HOSPEEM staff appointment in 2021

Simone Mohrs, HOSPEEM Policy Officer, has been appointed as Expert for the Employers Group of the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC), ensuring hospital and healthcare employers' voice are represented in the opinion on the European Beating Cancer Plan.
Sara Fasoli took the position of HOSPEEM Project and Membership Relations Officer. While continuing working on the HOSPEEM file related to skills for the healthcare sector, she now also focuses on the relations with HOSPEEM Members and on new Members’ recruitment process.


Member's testimonial: Zorgnet-Icuro, Belgium

"Zorgnet-Icuro became an observer member of HOSPEEM a year ago. This collaboration was all the more rewarding because Europe is becoming increasingly important for our role as employers in the Belgian healthcare sector. We are confident that in HOSPEEM, we have found the right partner to represent our interests as employers of healthcare in Europe. We are therefore pleased to continue our cooperation as a full-fledged member from now on."

Margot Cloet, Director General of Zorgnet-Icuro, Belgium

New Dutch Hospital Association Strategy (NVZ)

Under the motto 'We do good care together', the Dutch Hospital Association (NVZ) wants to ensure that the high quality of Dutch hospital care in the coming years. In its new strategy, the NVZ describes the challenges for the hospital landscape and its vision for the future. Healthcare providers must cooperate more to organise care regionally: as close to the patient as possible and at home. Hospitals should also ensure valuable care, improve the quality of care with ICT, data and AI while remaining an attractive and innovative workplace for the health workforce. Appropriate funding for healthcare must lead to a healthcare system with sufficient financial resources and aim to reward the right care in the right place.

The UK to strengthen its ethical approach to the international recruitment of health and care workers

The UK has updated its code of practice for the international recruitment of health and social care staff to align with the World Health Organization (WHO), widening the global market from which the UK can ethically recruit. To align with the WHO, the new code refers to the WHO Health Workforce Support and safeguard List of 47 countries where active recruitment cannot be undertaken. NHS Employers set out a good explainer here. On 21 April 2021, NHS, together with the UK Department of Health and Social Care, the King's College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, will speak on Ethical international recruitment of skilled workers in the healthcare sector online seminar series hosted by the German institute EBB Bildung.

NHS England and NHS Improvement published the first national Violence Prevention and Reduction Standard for NHS organisations

The new standard complements existing health and safety legislation, employers (including NHS employers) have a general duty of care to protect staff from threats and violence at work. The standard delivers a risk-based framework that supports a safe and secure working environment for NHS staff, safeguarding them against abuse, aggression and violence.


European Society of Intensive Care Medicine opens C19_SPACE programme

The aim of this EU-funded free of charge programme  is to provide Intensive Care fundamentals required for the deployment of healthcare professionals that do not work regularly in intensive care units at the time of COVID-19

EU4Health Programme enters into force

The €5.1 billion EU4Health programme was established in March 2021 to contribute to the post-COVID-19 recovery by strengthening the resilience of health systems and promoting innovation in the health sector. EU4Health will provide funding to EU countries, health organisations and NGOs.

Portuguese Presidency is preparing the for Porto Social Summit in May 2021

The focus of the Porto Social Summit is to give political impetus to the implementation of the European Pillar of Social Rights and its Action Plan, to which HOSPEEM provided feedback in November 2020. During the summit, European leaders will reinforce dialogue with social partners and HOSPEEM will be represented by SGI Europe.

European Parliament EMPL Committee votes in favour of the inclusion of hazardous medicinal products

MEPs voted to extend the scope of the Carcinogens and Mutagens Directive with the inclusion of reprotoxic substances and inclusion of hazardous medicinal products. At the committee meeting on 13 April, MEPs will vote on the decision to enter into interinstitutional negotiations.

European Health and Digital Executive Agency was established

The European Health and Digital Executive Agency (HaDEA) manages European programmes on behalf of the European Commission (DG CNECT, DEFIS, GROW, RTD, SANTE) to help rebuild a post-COVID-19 Europe, which aims to be greener, more digital, more resilient and better fit for the current challenges.

Thematic Network (TN) Final Joint Statement on Profiling and training the health care workers of the future

Since early 2020, HOSPEEM was active in the TN activities, invited as commentator and providing high-level speakers in the series of Webinars organised by the TN. The Joint Statement includes the NVZ/NFU case study on training programme CZO Flexlevel and the NHS case study on digital readiness.

Eurofound launched a study on social dialogue and collective bargaining in hospitals and civil aviation during the Covid-19 pandemic


23/02/2021: Sara Fasoli was interviewed by the European Reference Group (ERG) of the DISH Project and she introduced HOSPEEM’s main initiatives and policy guidelines in the field of digital skills for the healthcare sector. Read the interview here

25/01/2020: HOSPEEM presented the Multi-sectoral guidelines to tackle third-party violence (TPV) and harassment related to work at the Sectoral Social Dialogue Committee for Telecommunications


HOSPEEM events
- 25/05/2021: HOSPEEM Webinar on collective bargaining
- 01/06/2021: HOSPEEM Steering Committee/General Assembly
- 29/11/2021: HOSPEEM General Assembly/ Steering Committee

- 02/06/2021: SSDC HS Working Group 2 2021
- 30/11/2021 SSDC HS Plenary 2021
- 20/04/2021: Regional workshop 3 on Strengthening Social Dialogue, Online
- 16/06/2021: Dissemination Workshop on Strengthening Social Dialogue, Online

Other events
- 13/04/2021: EESC Hearing on the European Beating Cancer Plan
- 16/04/2021: European Social Partner Hearing on the Green paper on Ageing, organised by the European Commission
- 21/04/2021: European Social Partner Hearing on the EU Strategic Framework on Occupational Safety and Health, organised by the European Commission
- 21/04/2021: EBB Ethical international recruitment of skilled workers in the healthcare sector
- 21-22/04/2021: ILO ITC Virtual Skills Fair
- 26/04/2021: EONS Webinars on Patient and Occupational Safety
- 15/06/2021: DG SANTE / EBN webinar on medical sharps and the Medical Device Directive


European Commission European Beating Cancer Plan

European Commission study on Hazardous medicinal products

European Commission European Pillar of Social Rights Action Plan

European Commission Communication on the "2030 Digital Compass: the European way for the Digital Decade

ECDC Infection prevention and control and preparedness for COVID-19 in healthcare settingssixth update

Eurofound Programming document 2021–2024 : Towards recovery and resilience

NHS Employers best practice of international recruitment throughout COVID-19

Eurofound representativeness study for the health sector

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