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Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Few small ones: telemedecine and researchers visas

Commission opens consultation on telemedicine

The Commission has called for experts to share their views on telemedicine as part of policy proposals on innovative technologies for chronic disease management due next year.

According to the Commission, telemedicineexternal , which refers to the use of information and communications technologies (ICT) for the delivery of health care, "appears to be a very promising tool to support the remote monitoring and management of chronically ill patients."

The Commission is thus inviting experts to share their experience and give concrete examples of their main achievements in the field. Experts are encouraged to detail their reasons - geographical, skills shortages or the need for complementary expertise - for the development of telemedicine solutions as well as the perceived impact of their activities. read more
My comment:sounds fun. And it's better than waiting for 3 hours before being admitted to your GP just so that he/she can tell you-you're fine.

Member states still hesitant to welcome foreign researchers

Only Austria, Belgium, Germany, Hungary, Portugal and Romania have implemented the researchers' visa directive before the deadline. The other 19 member states could now be taken to the European Court of Justice for failing to grant third-country nationals entry to their territory to carry out scientific research.

If Europe is to be a world leader in science, then it must be open to the world. The current system can be off-putting for scientists from abroad," said Research Commissioner Janez Potočnik, deploring the fact that member states had not yet "honoured their commitments".

The directive sets out a specific procedure for allowing third-country nationals into the EU for the purposes of carrying out scientific research - the so-called researchers' visa.

The Commission is now entitled to open infringement proceedings against the 19 member states who have failed to implement the necessary laws, regulations and administrative provisions to fully implement the directive.

The researchers' visa directive is part of a larger 'researchers' package', adopted by the Council in Autumn 2005, to attract foreign researchers to the EU. In addition to the directive on visas, it included two recommendations on facilitating the admission of third-country scientists to the EU in order to carry out research and issuing uniform short-stay visas allowing them to travel within the Union. The recommendations took effect immediately after adoption.

Supporting the mobility of researchers is one of the instruments for achieving the Lisbon objectives and a prerequisite for the process of building a true European Research Area (ERA).


My comment: A great initiative, indeed. But I'm not sure what's the good of it-even now of-EU researchers work easily enough in the EU. In science it's not the visas the problem, but the money.

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