Controversial proposal on health care

06/07/2009

 

Swedish Ministers Göran Hägglund and Maria Larsson are hosting the first EU Ministerial meeting in Sweden. The EU response to the new influenza is one of the important topics, public health concerns over alcohol consumption another. Patient mobility and antibiotic resistant bacteria are other issues on the agenda.

However, Göran Hägglund does not plan to inform his colleagues about a controversial plan by the government to introduce health care into the scope of the services directive. Trade Minister Ewa Björling today stated that such an initiative will be taken in the internal market context.

Health care was included in Frits Bolkesteins´ proposal for free trade in services, but after strong protests from trade unions and many governments, it was thrown out.

Since the Swedish EU Presidency is rather careful, it is somewhat surprising that Ewa Björling makes such a daring proposal. I can´t find it in the Presidency Work Programme.

I wonder what Party groups in the European Parliament will say next week, when Prime Minister Reinfeldt adresses the plenary.

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