Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2009-04-23-Speech-4-020"

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". Mr President, ladies and gentlemen, today we are approving a directive of considerable importance, a directive that concerns patients – as has already been pointed out – and all European citizens. On the very eve of the European elections, all European citizens can see, once again, how Parliament can have a positive effect on the life of each of them. The Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union establishes the right to healthcare and, with this directive, we are now giving substance to that right. It is an issue that concerns a huge number of citizens: a recent Eurobarometer survey showed that today 50% of European citizens are prepared to travel to receive treatment abroad, in the hope of finding better, faster treatment for their illness, and 74% of citizens feel that when they go abroad for treatment, this should be reimbursed by their own Member State. The area is currently governed by national laws, and citizens are poorly informed with regard to the options, reimbursement and possible treatment abroad. Indeed, today only 4% of European citizens are treated abroad. The European Union has uniform regulations only in cases of emergency healthcare treatment received abroad on the basis of the regulation on the European health insurance card. Today Parliament is granting European citizens’ request for health protection, and in the field of healthcare Europe is preparing to do away with borders and to enable all patients to choose where they receive treatment."@en1

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