Today marks the launch of the EBC statement “Counting down to zero: Towards a future with underfunded health research?” which calls on the European Commission, the European Parliament and the Council to increase the budget of the “Horizon Europe” programme to at least €120 billion. What is more, the statement calls on European decision-makers to redistribute the budget in order to ensure that more funding is allocated to the “health” cluster under Pillar II.
The proposal for “Horizon Europe”, published in June 2018, includes an overall budget of €94.1 billion in inflation-adjusted prices. Within this budget, roughly €7.7 billion is proposed to fund the “Health” cluster that is part of the pillar “Global Challenges and Industrial Competitiveness”.
EBC welcomes the increase of the overall draft budget but firmly believes that the proposed budget as it currently stands is insufficient to effectively address today’s societal challenges. The treatment of brain disorders alone is estimated to cost close to €800 billion annually, which makes adopting a robust 9th Framework Programme with a strong focus on accelerating health research of paramount importance. What is more, the proposed budget for the “Health” cluster confirms a steady decrease of funding over time and across Framework Programmes, as health was previously allocated 12% under the 7th Framework Programme, 10% under Horizon 2020 and now 8% in the Horizon Europe proposal.
The full statement can be accessed here.
EBC invites all organizations, operating at national and/or EU level, that are supportive of the call to join as co-signatory of the statement. Please contact the EBC office (email@example.com or +32 (0)2 513 27 57) should you be interested in having the logo of your organization added to the list of signatories.
 Di Luca, M. & Olesen, J. (2014) The cost of brain diseases: a burden or a challenge? Neuron 82, 1205-1208.