Skip to main content
Public Health

2017 EU Health Award for NGOs

Rewarding outstanding initiatives by NGOs which have helped achieve higher levels of public health for Europeans through vaccination

In 2017, the European Commission rewarded outstanding initiatives by NGOs which have helped achieve higher levels of public health for Europeans through vaccination.

There were 27 candidate NGOs which were considered for the prize, with applications coming from 16 different countries. Commissioner Vytenis Andriukaitis announced the shortlisted NGOs' initiatives at the at the European Health Forum Gastein in Austria.

The winners of the EU Health Award for NGOs 2017 were announced on 27 November 2017 at the Award Ceremony hosted during the EU Health Policy Platform annual meeting, in presence of EU Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, Vytenis Andriukaitis.


1st Prize

SloMSIC Ljubljana

Project Immuno

Project Immuno is part of a medical students’ organisation called SloMSIC Ljubljana. Their main goal is to raise general public's awareness of importance of vaccines through workshops for future parents and high school students, as well as organizing seasonal flu vaccination.Petitioning decision makers is one of the key aspects of this project.

Project Immuno advocates for movements, legislature and projects that have proven effective abroad or in the past.

SloMSIC encourages other societies of medical students in Europe and around the world to set up a similar activity.

Read the summary report

See the poster

2nd Prize

Association National Network of Health Mediators (NNHM)

Vaccine Prophylaxis Through Health Mediation In Roma Community

For many years NNHM collaborates with EU NGOs and NGOs from the Balkans developing the Health Mediators (HM) model for work with vulnerable communities (Roma). The key task of HM is achieving good immunization coverage, which will indeed improve the level of public health through inclusion of the most marginalized in the health care system.

Trainings at the Medical University-Sofia (Bulgaria) have been organised in a regular basis to gather and exchange experiences between skilful Health Mediators.

Read the summary report

See the poster

3rd Prize

European Pharmaceutical Students' Association (EPSA)

EPSA Vaccination Awareness Public Health Campaign 2016

The vision of the Association is to represent, reach and engage every single pharmacy student in Europe to collaborate on the development of the future of pharmacy and healthcare together. EPSA organizes public health campaigns that aim at preventing and informing the general public by promoting healthy lifestyles but also by applying the sustained work done by professional health organizations and competent law entities.

Their Vaccination Awareness campaign focuses on disseminating the benefits of vaccination at local, national and European level, develop a targeted approach to different social categories, and emphasize the role of pharmacists in vaccination delivery.

Read the summary report

See the poster

Shortlisted initiatives

Collaborative Center for Clinical Epidemiology and Outcomes Research (CLEO)

Increasing Healthcare Workers’ (HCW) uptake of seasonal influenza vaccination (SIV) in a tertiary pediatric hospital in Greece with a 3-step, tailor-made multifaceted strategy

CLEO’s vision is to improve patient safety and the quality of healthcare services provided by Greek hospitals, with emphasis on the prevention of hospital acquired infections and the judicious use of antibiotics.

Their strategy to increase influenza vaccination among Healthcare Workers' (HCW) has a three-step approach: Identify the factors associated with HCW non-vaccination; design a multifaceted intervention to increase HCW influenza vaccination implement and evaluation of the intervention. It implements EU legislation, promotion of best practices, benchmarking for decision-making and networking.

Read the summary report

Confederation of Meningitis Organisations (CoMO)

The Life Course Immunisation Initiative

CoMO seeks to promote advocacy and awareness-raising efforts as they are aimed at reducing the incidence and impact of meningitis and septicaemia at a regional, European and International level. The Life Course Immunisation (LCI) initiative focuses on promoting vaccination across the life span from babyhood to old age combating cross-border threats.

A benefit of the formation of a coalition of individuals and organisations dedicated to this purpose is that best practices from Member States can be shared. Among other activities, CoMO organises workshops and conferences at EU level to raise this concern.

Read the summary report


Hepatitis B vaccination for sex workers in Flanders

GHAPRO is an organisation that works on the ground, focusing on the needs and requirements of male and female sex workers in Flanders who are exposed to a certain amount of diseases and risks. Sex workers were informed about this initiative through different channels about hepatitis B and about the possibility of being vaccinated for the disease.

With this project GHAPRO shows that vaccination for these individuals is possible and effective even if they can be difficult to reach because of language barriers and cultural differences.

Read the summary report


Vaccination program for senior citizens

KBO-PCOB is the largest elderly association of the Netherlands. Its goal is to maximize the clear and proven health benefits that can be achieved through the vaccination of the elderly in effective and sustainable manner. Through the vaccination program KBO-PCOB aims to look closely to how other Member States have organized vaccination of elderly, propose a national vaccination schedule and continue to act as a network player across borders. The programme includes constant communication to their membership and through media.

Read the summary report

Pavee Point Traveller and Roma Centre

Community Awareness Programme on Vaccination

Pavee Point Traveller and Roma Centre is a national non-governmental organisation committed to improving the quality of life, living conditions and status of Irish Travellers and Roma in Ireland. The organisation is a partnership of Travellers, Roma and members of the majority population working together to address the needs of Travellers and Roma as minority ethnic groups who experience exclusion, marginalisation and racism.

With a local, regional and national remit, the organisation works within a broad of policy areas, including public health. Drawing on the work of our Primary Health Care for Travellers Project and expertise of Traveller Community Health Workers, the Vaccination Awareness Initiative, addresses the gap of low vaccination uptake amongst Traveller through a peer-led education approach.

The initiative combines awareness raising campaigns and promotion of vaccination at community level, demonstrating a cost-effective approach in bridging the gap between a community experiencing high health inequalities and a health service unable to reach and engage that community effectively in health service provision.

Read the summary report

Romanian Association for Pediatric Education in Family Medicine (AREPMF)

Vaccine Advocacy/National awareness and education campaign on the benefits of vaccination and the risks of non-vaccination

AREPMF is a nongovernmental organization dedicated to professional and scientific promotion and development of paediatric practice in the specialty of family medicine in Romania. The Association proposes addressing and debating the most pressing child health issues in order to develop health policies that maintain a high standard of health for children and the family.

The main objectives of Vaccine Advocacy Campaign are to improve rates of childhood immunization and to control the vaccine preventable diseases through education, awareness and commitment.

Read the summary report

Vienna Vaccine Safety Initiative Think Tank

A Mobile Application empowering parents to understand their children's vaccination records

The Vienna Vaccine Safety Initiative derives know-how from a variety of disciplines relevant to vaccinology and infectious disease prevention. It has performed research on improving vaccine communication via the public media and is actively involved in evidence-based communication toward the general public.

In collaboration with Hasso Plattner Institute School of Design Thinking, Europe’s first innovation school, developed new approaches to improving vaccine communication.

This collaboration lead to the development of the VaccApp, a person-centered digital tool empowering parents to gain a better understanding of the vaccines administered to their children.

Read the summary report


#VaccinesWork - it is a fact, not an opinion - #video message from @V_Andriukaitis upon the launch of #EUHealthAward


— EU_Health (@EU_Health) May 15, 2017

As with the EU Health Awards 2015 and 2016, this award is linked to the European Commission’s work to build up a database of good practices in various health fields (Ebola in 2015 and AMR in 2016) from NGOs that can serve as models for the future.

Access to this inventory should inspire other NGOs and public authorities in EU Member States as well as international organisations to replicate these good practices in protecting human health.

The European Commission calls upon international, European, national and regional NGOs active in the field of vaccination to present details of their initiatives to the EU Health Award 2017. The call for applications targets initiatives that help achieving higher level of public health for Europeans through vaccination, with particular attention to several related aspects:

  1. Prevention: availability of vaccines and access to sustainable immunization services
  2. Awareness and information: promoting vaccination/advocacy
  3. Countering growing vaccine hesitancy
  4. Engaging with health care professionals to strengthen education/medical curricula/training, advocacy and health care professionals’ communication skills
  5. Surveillance
  6. Tackling vaccination from a specific disease perspective (e.g. Human Papilloma virus HPV, seasonal flu, childhood immunisation, life-course vaccination/adult vaccination, synergies between vaccination and use of antibiotic)
  7. Other initiatives that can promote higher levels of public health in EU through vaccination.

Potential activities – targeting the general public, patients, healthcare workers or international organisations - that NGOs carry out could include the following:

  1. Advocacy
  2. Service providing: providing cost effective and safe vaccination
  3. Awareness-raising
  4. Education/training: to general public / national authorities/ health professionals
  5. Knowledge: such as about social and behavioural aspects and balancing supply and demand.

Among the non-governmental organisations that respond to this call, a number will be shortlisted and three will be awarded for their outstanding initiatives. The prizes will rank as follows:

  • 1st prize: 20 000 €
  • 2nd prize: 15 000 €
  • 3rd prize: 10 000 €

The EU Health Award is funded under the 3rd Health Programme 2014-2020.

Please find more information on the rules and how to apply.