Meeting at the European Parliament in Brussels to speak about Advanced Therapies with RESTORE community
On Monday 5th December, RESTORE members and supporters attended a lunchtime meeting at the European Parliament in Brussels to speak about Advanced Therapies. The debate, organised by RESTORE and hosted by Dr Christian Ehler, highlighted the staggering and increasing health costs imposed by chronic diseases in Europe, which has both economic and societal impact. Prof Hans-Dieter Volk (BIH, Charité) cautioned that, whilst Advanced Therapies are already a reality, huge barriers remain to their sustainable and widespread distribution across Europe.
However, it is not all doom and gloom. Advanced Therapies, indeed, hold real promises as curative treatments for chronic diseases and with the concerted action of RESTORE, its supporters, and the backing of EU initiatives, the goal of affordable and accessible Advanced Therapies for everyone in Europe will become ever more achievable. A key aim of RESTORE is to generate a sustainable ecosystem combining all aspects of Advanced Therapeutic development to accelerate innovation at scientific, technical, logistical and economic level. Guillaume Fusai (responsible for EU affairs at INSERM) acknowledged the importance of RESTORE in generating such a hub, which combines industry, hospitals and research to advance and fast-track the translation of basic research to the clinic.
The new challenges and opportunities of Advanced Therapies were recognised also by the pharmaceutical industry and by the patients, mainly impacted by these therapies. Karolina Hanslik from the European Organisation for Rare Diseases (EURORDIS) highlighted that there is hope for new treatment options, and possible cures, for people living with rare diseases. Since there are numerous challenges to bringing the Advanced Therapies to the patients, the rare diseases’ community expects to be supported by European institutions, national governments, researchers, clinicians and initiatives such as RESTORE, to have access to the most effective, innovative treatments.
In conclusion, the mission of RESTORE is not just to raise awareness of the hurdles standing in the way of Advanced Therapies, but also to provide potential solutions to overcome them. In this regard, the RESTORE position paper outlines recommendations to the EU and to all those involved in Advanced Therapy research for ensuring the future of accessible and affordable Advanced Therapeutics too all those in need.