The European Union seeks to increase stocks of iodine and personal protective equipment against radiation, the Financial Times quoted a representative of the European Commission.
“The commission is working to increase preparedness in the field of chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear threats in general, and these efforts began before the start of hostilities in Ukraine,” the newspaper quoted the spokesman as saying.
According to the Financial Times, Brussels is trying to apply “the lessons of the COVID-19 pandemic, which left Europe without sufficient supplies of personal protective equipment and vaccines.” The European Health Emergency Response Authority (HERA) was set up last year to identify and prepare for possible future health emergencies.
If necessary, HERA calls for increased funding and the launch of mechanisms for monitoring, targeting and purchasing the necessary medical supplies and goods. In addition, it has production facilities ready to meet the demand for medicines.
MEPs said that the work of HERA should be intensified after the events in Ukraine.
“We have important lessons to be learned from the coronavirus pandemic,” the newspaper quoted one as saying. “We demand concrete measures for nuclear facilities. We are not ready for that yet, we do not have the necessary reserves,” the legislator added.
Belgium, Bulgaria and the Czech Republic have previously reported that pharmacies do not have potassium iodide tablets, which are used to treat the effects of radiation, as well as other iodine drugs, the newspaper recalls. At the end of February, the Bulgarian government decided to allocate additional funding of 4.1 million levs (about 2.05 million euros) for the purchase of special materials in case of a nuclear accident.