Countries that are members of the European Union (EU) have primary responsibility for delivering health services and medical care to their citizens. European health law, and health policy in general, seeks to complement national policies in order to ensure adequate health care provision in all countries in the EU.
EU policies and initiative in public health seek to:
• Protect and improve the health and well-being of all EU citizens.
• Help EU member states to modernize their health infrastructure.
• Improve the overall efficiency if EU health systems.
Representatives of national authorities of EU member states consider health issues in conjunction with the European Commission (EC) through senior-level working groups that operate in the health area. The EC proposes legislation, offers financial support and coordinates the exchange of best practices in health. The legal framework for health law is provided as part of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, particularly section 168 (protecting public health) and article 153 (social policy).