The European Health Forum Gastein is an independent, non-partisan organisation, founded in 1998 as a European health policy platform, which has since grown far beyond traditional health policy spaces.
Our aim is to provide a neutral and inclusive platform for the discussion and advancement of health, solidarity and equity in the EU and beyond, and our founding principle is the equal representation of all stakeholders.
Since its inception, the EHFG has developed into a key platform for health policy exchange, bringing together stakeholders and decision-makers from the public and private sector, civil society, and science and academia, who together form the four pillars of the EHFG with their specific perspectives and knowledge.
The EHFG further considers the vertical organisation of societies and the EU by integrating local, regional, national, European and international levels and facilitating the exchange of views and experience amongst key actors and communities from EU member states and the EEA countries, but also from the 52 countries of the WHO European Region.
Over the past decade, the EHFG has established itself as an indispensable institution in the scope of intersectoral European health policy, and has made a decisive contribution to the cross-border transfer of experience, information and best practice.
Up to 900 leading experts, decision-makers and community members participate in the annual conference and take part in additional EHFG events, projects and initiatives year-round, and the unparalleled mix of participants as well as the inclusive, courageous and candid nature of discussions set the tone for a unique opportunity of exchange and collaboration.EHFG Archive
We provide the intersectoral and inclusive forum for discussion to our key stakeholders to network, learn from each other, share the latest health policy developments in their countries and across Europe, and shape the future of health and societal equity.
We focus primarily on health policy in Europe, at all political levels.
Leaders from all health stakeholder groups meet & debate in Gastein.
We report to key European & national institutions, feeding into future policies.
Discuss with senior experts & get a 360° view on major topics.
First conference held under the main theme of Creating a better future for health systems in Europe. Topics discussed then: European Health Policy at the Turn of the Millennium, Global Development, National Responsibility and Regional Challenge in a Changing Europe and International Networks.
Reaching 450 delegates. Focus on: health information, adapting IT applications to the needs of health services and improving communication about health risks. A place to be for the back-then EU Applicant CEE countries.
The necessity of integrating health into different policy areas will remain high on the agenda throughout the years.
Reaching 600 delegates! On the occasion of its 10th anniversary the EHFG has founded the European Health Award (EHA) and the Young Forum Gastein Network initiatives.
Drawing attention to the impact of financial crisis and subsequent economic recession on the health systems of Europe and beyond. Health economics, health systems performance and austerity measures will remain on the agenda in the coming years.
After leading the EHFG for 15 years, founding-father Professor Günther Leiner hands over the presidency to Professor Helmut Brand. MEP Karin Kadenbach is elected Vice-President.
Featuring an EU Presidency-Trio debate & Nobel Prize Laureate on stage. Topics on the agenda: population ageing, the rise of multi-morbidity, increased societal diversity and migratory pressures.
In the 2017 board elections, Clemens Martin Auer, Director General at the Austrian Ministry for Health & Women's Affairs was elected the new EHFG President.
At the 21st EHFG conference, health policy experts acknowledged the necessity to avoid reversing the strides achieved in improving the health of Europeans and raised concerns about the possible impact of the 2019 European elections on Europe’s health agenda.
The 22nd edition of the EHFG conference hosted 600 leading health policy experts agreeing on the need for disruptive changes for health and societal well-being.
Amidst a global pandemic that made health a fiercely politicised issue and demonstrated the need for true cross-sector and cross-border collaboration, the EHFG 2020 explored new ways of engaging with the biggest players in health and forging fresh partnerships among stakeholders in the quest to improve health and well-being for all - "dancing with elephants".
At the digital EHFG 2021, decision-makers, experts and community members from the public and private sector, civil society and academia came together to envision how we can build resilience to prevail over current and future challenges, and fight for solidarity and equity, within Europe and on the global stage. One message was clear: to transform the grim lessons learned into sustainable strategies for a better tomorrow, it is essential to level up in all areas of health, health policy and multilateral cooperation.
Three years since the last onsite meeting in the Gastein Valley, the European public health community once more came together to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the EHFG and its first ever hybrid conference. Discussions focused on the challenges and policy options for action urgently needed across sectors, borders, and disciplines at this watershed moment.
The EHFG produces a catalogue of recommendations and observations – the EHFG Outcomes - for those with responsibility in policy development and implementation, in health and beyond. These Outcomes are communicated to relevant national and European institutions, as well as the wider EHFG community.Outcomes 2022
The EHFG is a superb market place of great ideas for health reforms in the EU Member States. My aim is to transform great visions into reality.
A regular exchange of best practice examples shall support this endeavour.
I am looking forward to the new tasks and the cooperation with the experienced EHFG secretariat.
The EHFG finances are made up of partnership fees from conference sessions and other stand-alone events, conference participation fees, and other financial contributions such as subsidies and grants. The organisation's founding principle is the equal representation of its four pillars, irrespective of their financial contribution to sustaining the EHFG.