The Society

ERS advocacy

We aim to protect and improve lung health for everyone.

What we do

Advocacy is a core pillar of the European Respiratory Society (ERS) alongside science and education. Through our advocacy efforts, ERS raises the profile of respiratory issues and promotes lung health. We work to shape EU policies by engaging directly with policymakers to secure the allocation of vital resources that can deliver better lung health, and we build coalitions focused on prevention, research, environment, tobacco control, public health, patients and respiratory disease areas.

Catch up on ERS advocacy events

Watch videos and access presentations from our past events, which bring together the respiratory community, MEPs and policymakers, and civil society organisations to increase engagement with current issues in respiratory medicine.

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Our alliances

ERS is a proud member of several alliances that centre on specific areas within the respiratory field. Alliances help to build coalitions focused on prevention, research, environment, tobacco control, public health, patients and respiratory disease areas.

Alliance for Biomedical Research in Europe (BioMed Alliance) - Preview Image

Alliance for Biomedical Research in Europe (BioMed Alliance)

ERS founded the BioMed Alliance in partnership with the European Cancer Association, the European Society of Cardiology and the European Association for the Study of Diabetes. The non-profit association was created to improve the international competitiveness of European science, assist scientists who are applying for EU support, promote science-based planning for Europe and ensure the future of European science funding for health.

European Chronic Disease Alliance (ECDA) - Preview Image

European Chronic Disease Alliance (ECDA)

ECDA seeks to tackle the rise in chronic disease incidence by providing science-based policy recommendations and addressing common risk factors, including tobacco use, poor nutrition, physical inactivity, alcohol consumption and environmental factors. The alliance raises awareness by engaging with policymakers and promotes the development and implementation of an EU strategy for tackling chronic disease.

European Public Health Alliance (EPHA) - Preview Image

European Public Health Alliance (EPHA)

EPHA is comprised of public health organisations, patient groups, health professionals, and disease groups that advocate for public health in Europe. The alliance monitors policy within EU institutions and helps to communicate developments in public health policy to everyone who is affected, enabling all stakeholders to contribute to the policymaking process.

Health and Environment Alliance (HEAL) - Preview Image

Health and Environment Alliance (HEAL)

HEAL is a not-for-profit group with a membership of over 70 organisations. The alliance was formed to address how environmental issues affect health in the EU and to integrate environmental concerns in public health decisions.

European Cancer Organisation - Preview Image

European Cancer Organisation

The European Cancer Organisation aims to reduce the burden of cancer, improve outcomes and the quality of care for cancer patients, through multidisciplinarity and multi-professionalism. It is a not-for-profit federation of member organisations working in cancer at a European level, which convenes oncology professionals and patients to agree policy, advocate for positive change and speak up for the European cancer community.

EU4Health - Preview Image


EU4Health is a civil society alliance which brings together organisations that share the vision of a Europe where all people are as healthy as they can be throughout their lives.

International partners

ERS collaborates with international partners to inform public health responses to respiratory health issues, contribute to health and awareness raising campaigns, and to shape EU policies to protect lung health.

World Health Organization (WHO) - Preview Image

World Health Organization (WHO)

WHO deals with epidemics, crises and prevention programmes around the world that seek to protect and improve public health. ERS works closely with WHO on a range of health topics, such as the framework for tuberculosis elimination.

European Medicines Agency (EMA) - Preview Image

European Medicines Agency (EMA)

The EMA engages with not-for-profit medical associations to ensure that the needs and concerns of healthcare professionals across Europe are represented in the work of the EMA. Through the Healthcare Professionals’ Working Party (HCPWP), ERS is involved in the exchange of information and discussion of issues of common interest between the EMA and healthcare professionals. Senior ERS leadership are also active in the EMA’s Task Force on COVID-19.

Forum of International Respiratory Societies (FIRS) - Preview Image

Forum of International Respiratory Societies (FIRS)

FIRS was founded in 2001 by several international professional respiratory societies from around the world including ERS, the American College of Chest Physicians, American Thoracic Society, Asian Pacific Society of Respirology, Asociación Latino Americana De Tórax, International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Diseases and Pan African Thoracic Society. The Global Initiative for Asthma and the Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease joined in 2017. The mission of FIRS is to promote respiratory health worldwide.

European Commission eHealth Stakeholder Group - Preview Image

European Commission eHealth Stakeholder Group

Relaunched in 2020, this group provides advice, expertise and contributes to EU-level policy development and the implementation of the communication on enabling the digital transformation of health and care in the Digital Single Market. ERS is a member of the e-Health Stakeholder Group.

Materials for patients and the public

Visit the European Lung Foundation website

European Lung Foundation (ELF) materials cover a wide variety of lung diseases and are designed to be accessible for people with lung conditions and the general public.

COVID-19 resources
E-cigarettes, heat-not-burn and smokeless tobacco products
View factsheet
Occupational risk factors for lung disease
Air pollution

EU projects

View all EU projects

ERS and ELF collaborate on a number of EU-funded projects that look at unmet medical and societal needs in the respiratory field. The projects address different aspects in the translational process and how observations in the clinic, laboratory or community turns into interventions that improve the health of individuals and the public.