The Equity Action final conference will take place in Brussels, Belgium, on 23rd January 2014 at the European Commission. Experts on health inequalities, officials and policy makers from Member States and the EU, a range of key stakeholders will meet and comment the results of Equity Action (the Joint Action on Health Inequalities), to assess progress on addressing health inequalities in the EU and to consider opportunities and priorities for action.
By Yoline Kuipers
As well as hearing examples from Equity Action there will be high level speakers who will share their analysis, and identify how work scheduled for the 2014-2020 programming period could help. There will be leadership key notes from Sir Michael Marmot (Institute of Health Equity), Commissioner Borg (DG SANCO), Zsuzsanna Jakab (WHO, Regional director for Europe) and political contributions from the European Parliament and the United Kingdom Department of Health. The cross-sectoral reach of Equity Action means that there will also be speakers from key Commission Directorates such as DG REGIO, DG EMLP, DG RTD and DG ENVI.
This conference is for leaders and champions at European and Member State and Regional level who are responsible for producing or shaping policies and strategies that address the social determinants of health such as housing, environment, education and employment, and those from NGOs and academia who are seeking to influence the uptake of policies to reduce health inequalities.
Equity Action has worked to strengthen the effectiveness of policy making and strategic actions to reduce health inequalities at member state, regional and EU levels. Work has included:
- Developing expertise in Health Impact Assessment and Health Equity Audit
- Improving the impact that structural funds have on tackling health inequalities
- Strengthening regional strategies to tackle health inequalities
- Broadening the evidence base on key issues such debt and financial insecurity
- Sharing good practice on stakeholder engagement to tackle health inequality together
Yoline is primarily responsible for the partnership and communication functions of the Equity Channel special project. She supports and develops the content of several online tools, as well as to bring together a wide network of people with an interest in health equity. Yoline is also engaged in liaison work with partners and EU bodies, for example by maintaining publications and presentations, shared calendars of events and a roadmap for the International Collaboration on the Social Determinants of Health.