SIP 2017 - Key Statement
Miroslav Mikolasik – Member of the European Parliament (MEP), Slovakia
"I deem crucial that we continue in our endeavour to push through the issue of pain further on the agenda both on EU and national levels."
Member of the European Parliament, Slovakia
Group of the European People‘s Party (EPP)
Pain represents a complex phenomenon both from a medical and societal point of view. Quality of life of persons suffering from pain, either acute or chronic, is in most cases necessarily lowered due to numerous challenges they are encountered with on daily basis. People afflicted by pain are often not capable of performing their work duties and sometimes are may be even completely excluded from the job market. Taking part in social and family activities can be equally problematic and at times not possible at all. Despite a whole range of barriers patients have to deal with I worry that our society still does not pay enough attention and has not yet fully recognised seriousness of this problem. Therefore, I am grateful for the platform embodied by the Societal Impact of Pain symposium where stakeholders from relevant scientific fields, as well as policy makers can engage in fruitful discussions, and more importantly – agree on the importance of taking concrete steps. I deem crucial that we continue in our endeavour to push through the issue of pain further on the agenda both on EU and national levels. II believe that in 2017 it is finally time for European society to fully acknowledge a need to talk about pain, and to take the necessary action to effectively fight its negative implications so we could provide for more joyful and fulfilled life without barriers and deprivations for people who suffer mainly from chronic forms of pain caused by long-term or incurable diseases.
Miroslav Mikolášik, born in 1952 in Dolný Kubín, Slovakia, holds a postgraduate diploma in general medicine, anaesthesiology and reanimation. He completed his studies at the Faculty of Medicine of Charles University in Prague. During his political career, he was appointed Ambassador of the Slovak Republic to Canada in 1999. In 2004, he was elected Member of the European Parliament, re-elected in 2009 and 2014. As a member of the Christian Democratic Party in Slovakia, which is a part of the European People’s Party, Mr Mikolášik sits in the European Parliament’s Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI), Committee on Regional Development (REGI) and the Subcommittee on Human Rights (DROI). He is also a Vice-President in the Euro-Latin Parliamentary Assembly (EuroLat). He is the founder and honorary president of the non-profit association Donum Vitae. In the periods of 1978-1990, 1992-1994 and 2002-2004 he was practising medicine. Dr. Mikolasik performed his research in the Institute of Medical Ethics and Bioethics in Bratislava where, as a true advocate for the human dignity, presented numerous lectures on the role of ethics in medicine. Currently he serves as the Chairman of the EPP Working Group on Bioethics and Human Dignity in the European Parliament.