Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences

Module Information
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EPH4004  - Europe as one Zone - European Health Law & Policies: The Translation of Evidence into Norms

Period 2: from 30-10-2023 to 22-12-2023
Coordinator: Wouters, B.
ECTS credits: 5
Language of instruction: English

Publication dates timetable/results in the Student Portal

Deadline publication timetable
The date on which the timetable of this module is available: 13-10-2023

Deadline publication final result
The date on which the final grade of this module is available: 23-1-2024

Resit booking

Exam booking for a test in current academic year (resit)
You will be booked automatically for the resit in one of our resit periods. You may check our calenders to find out which modules can be retaken and when: https://intranet.maastrichtuniversity.nl/nl/fhml-studenten/studieverloop/wanneer-wat
As of one week before the resit test takes place, you can check in Student Portal if you are booked correctly: Student Portal > My Courses > More actions. The test will also be visible in your time table.

Exam booking for a test from a previous academic year (exam only)
All students who have not passed the test for this module in a previous academic year, will be booked automatically for the test during the regular block period. You will be enrolled in the new course in Canvas but not scheduled for a tutorial group and other educational activities. If you do not wish to participate in this test at the end of the regular block period please de-register via askFHML.

Resit date: 16-2-2024

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Course information

Description: EN:

This module looks at how Europe becomes one zone in relation to public health. 

We particularly examine the competence of the European Union in relation to health and public health. We consider, in detail, how a small number of health policies move through the legislative process from evidenced policy choices to law; particularly looking at the Cross-border Patient Rights Directive, and the General Data Protection Regulation. 

In order to do this, we will also critically evaluate the general European Union law, particularly in relation to public health and governance. We consider the relationship between Treaty Law, Regulations and Directives, and Policy Initiatives; and the relationship between institutions in the EU and Member States.

Background and setting:

The original purpose of the European project was purely economic, and this legacy is still visible in the primary focus in the EU treaties on the free movement for people, goods, services, and capital. The place of health in the European project is much more ambiguous. In part, the necessity for a direct Europe-wide response to public health has obvious harmonisation and Europeanisation goals; public health is necessary for the operation of ‘Europe’ on all levels. However, it is more difficult to see the competence of the Union in matters of private health care. In private health, the Union can only speak through its general economic competence. However, when it does speak on matters of health, there is a loud ambiguity between single market harmonisation and social federalist ideals. This is, of course, an expression of the ambiguity at the heart of the Europe project, and at the health of its history. 

Goals: EN:

Knowledge and understanding

At the end of the module, students have insight in and knowledge about:

  • the main political and legal institutions of the EU, their tasks and their competences
  • the decision procedures and legal and policy instruments
  • the historical development of European cooperation and the role and content of the European Treaties
  • the relation between EU and the Member States and the principle of subsidiarity
  • the formal competences and activities of the EU in the field of health (prevention, research, pharmaceuticals, services)
  • the transformation of principles and evidence into policy

Application of knowledge and understanding

At the end of the module, students:

- understand the impact of the legal and political infrastructure of the EU

- are able to assess the role of the EU and other bodies concerning prevention and healthcare on the level of the EU and on the national level

Making judgements

At the end of the module, students are able to:

- reflect critically on the function of laws, moral principles, and regulations which shape the governance of prevention and healthcare.


At the end of the module students are able to:

- communicate in a professional way with policy makers and other representatives of European organisations

- decipher the language barriers between professions involved in the translation of evidence into policies

Learning skills

At the end of the module, students are able to:

- read primary and secondary legal texts

- construct and communicate legal arguments 

Key words: EN:
Health Law; European Union; Policy; Law and Society
Literature: This is the link to Keylinks, our online reference list.  
Teaching methods:
  • Work in workgroup(s)
  • Lecture(s)
  • Problem Based Learning
Assessments methods:
  • Attendance
  • Written exam

This page was last modified on:1-6-2018
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