July 2013

(Published in: ESRS Newsletter July 2013, click here to go to Table of Contents)

ESRS EU Committee

Members (2012 – 2014):
Roberto Amici (Chair), Diego Garcia Borreguero (Co-Chair), Marta Gonçalves, Damien Leger, Dieter Riemann

The main aims of the Committee are: i) to bring the topics of “sleep” and “sleep disorders” to the attention of the EU in order to receive support for research and teaching activities; ii) to promote sleep-related issues from a political point of view at a European and National level.

The main achievement of the last four-month period was the Meeting “Networking to Understand Sleep Functions and Dysfunctions -The European Basic and Clinical Sleep Research Towards Horizon 2020”, which was held on May 3 in Brussels. This meeting was part of the programme of the “Month of the Brain”, that was organised in May 2013 at the initiative of the DG Research and Innovation (Health Directorate) of the EU Commission. During the Meeting, several present and past ESRS Board members and officers addressed EU officers from different Commissions and DGs on the ongoing activities and goals of the main European Sleep Research and Sleep Medicine Networks, in terms of the impact on science, health, education and work/road safety. In particular, the need of a specific call on Sleep in the forthcoming Framework Horizon 2020 was addressed. A detailed report of the meeting and all presentations are available on the ESRS website under the heading “Committee & Networks/ EU Committee”.

Moreover, further crucial steps of the project “Wake-up Bus” have been made under the Coordination of Marta Gonçalves (President of the Portuguese Sleep Society and member of the EU Committee) with the EU Committee and the ANSS. The project is aimed at raising awareness among general public of the importance of sleepiness as a one of the main causes of road accidents. The final route and the dates of the “Wake-up” bus have been set. The bus will leave Oporto on October 4th and will get Brussels on October 14th after visiting 10 countries. An awareness campaign will be run by the National Sleep Society of each country visited by the bus. The journey will end with a meeting at the EU Parliament that will be held on October 15th, in which the EU Parliamentarians will be addressed by ESRS officers, ANSS members, and a panel of experts about “sleepiness at the wheel”- related issues. Moreover, the ESRS online European Sleep Study on “Sleepiness and Accidents” is now available online for the 18 countries which agreed to be involved in this project (http://www.esrs.eu/sleepstudy.html ). The results of the study will be presented on our ESRS web site and at the EU Parliament.

Roberto Amici