CONFERENCECounty: Bryssel

Promoting a European welfare sector

As people increasingly move between EU Member States the demand for well-functioning transnational welfare also increases. The EU has recognised this, both by the Directive on Patients' Rights in Cross-border Healthcare, which creates more flexibility for patients, and the Directive on the Recognition of Professional Qualifications, which makes it possible for experienced staff to use their skills in other Member States. This erases national boundaries and geographical borders.

Providing the opportunity for start-ups in welfare services is an important part of keeping high quality and global competitiveness. The use of the Freedom of Choice model is one of those opportunities.

In contrast to the contract model, where businesses compete for the market, the free choice model means that competition is created in the market. The providers therefore compete on quality and not price. The system is a complement to the public procurement system in Sweden and may be used when exposing individual services to competition.

At the seminar we will describe this system and show how it can open an often closed market, the healthcare sector. We will also show good examples of how transnational exchanges generate better services both in the country of origin and the country of establishment.


07.30 Registration and coffee

08.00 Ambassador Jan Olsson welcomes.

Mr. Ulf Lindberg, Head of Public Affairs, Almega

Minster Maria Larsson, Swedish Minister for Children and the Elderly, Ministry of Health and Social Affairs

Mr Paulo Silva, DG Markt, public procurement legislation I

MEP Cecilia Wikström, Group of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE)

Mrs. Ellen Hausel Heldahl, Head of Department for Enforcement of Public Procurement Laws, Swedish Competition Authority

Mr Per Båtelson, Founder and board member at Global Health Partner

Panel discussion moderated by Cathy Smith, former BBC TV & Channel 4 News presenter.

10.00 Seminar ends


Date and time

  • Thursday 6 December 2012, kl. 07:30 – 10:00


The Swedish Permanent Representation, Square de Meeûs 30, Brussels