• 2013 is the European Year of Citizens, which especially aims at raising citizens' awareness of their rights and at stimulating their active participation in the European policy-making;
• 25 October 2013 is the deadline for the national transposition of the directive 2011/24/EU on the application of patients' rights in cross-border healthcare, which officially recognizes most of the rights established in the European Charter and can therefore not be successfully implemented without the involvement of patients' organisations.
The structure of the conference will therefore reflect these two rationales.
The Directive on Patients' Rights in Cross Border Care
The Directive on Patients' Rights in Cross Border Care creates a clarified legal framework for patients' entitlement to seek healthcare in another Member State and to get reimbursed. But first and foremost, it is an innovative text which formally states for the first time the existence of EU patients' rights such as free choice, right to information, to quality of care, etc.
The conference is part of a process aimed at supporting the involvement of civic organisations in the transposition of the Directive in every Member State, for a citizen-centered and successful implementation. This strategy, which will be officially launched by ACN in occasion of the conference, will bring to the celebration of the 25 October all over the EU. It will be an occasion for all patient and civic organisations to inform European citizens on what has been done and on what still has to be done to make the rights sanctioned in the Directive come true.