Commission answer to EP question on the designation of 2014 as the European Year of Mental Health and the Brain
Friday 27 January 2012
On 27 January, Commissioner Geoghegan-Quinn, EU Commissioner for Research, responded to a question from the co-chairs of the Mental Health Interest Group in the European Parliament about the designation of 2014 as the European Year of Mental Health and the Brain.
Ms Geoghegan-Quinn said that the Commission was fully aware of the high burden caused by brain disorders in Europe and that brain research is a priority for the Commission. She pointed out that this has been continuously addressed in the EU Framework Programmes (FP) for research (FP7 and the Joint Programming Initiative on Neurodegenerative Diseases, in particular Alzheimer's). These efforts are also in line with the European Pact for Mental Health and Well-Being.
Commissioner Geoghegan-Quinn recognises that the designation of 2014 as European Year of the Brain could help to increase the profile of all brain diseases across the EU and also contribute to the development of plans for addressing this important societal challenge. However, no decision has been taken yet.
Regardless of this decision, the Commission will organise a large awareness event about the brain that will take the form of a European "month of the brain" during the first half of 2013.
The original question originated from the four co-chairs of the EP Mental Health Interest Group: Nessa Childers (Ireland), Marian Harkin (Ireland), Jean Lambert (UK) and Antonyia Parvanova (Bulgaria).