ERN

European Reference Network

European Reference Networks (ERNs) are virtual networks involving Reference Centers across Europe. They aim to tackle complex or rare diseases and conditions that require highly specialised treatment and concentrated knowledge and resources.To review a patient’s diagnosis and treatment, ERN coordinators will convene a “virtual” advisory board of medical specialists across different disciplines, using a dedicated IT platform and telemedicine tools. This way it is the medical knowledge and expertise that travel rather than the patients, who have the comfort of staying in their supportive home environments.

ERNs are based on directive 2011/24/EU of the European Parliament and the council European citizens have the right to cross-border healthcare. Here the European Union provides rules for facilitating the access to safe and high-quality cross-border healthcare and promotes cooperation on healthcare between Member States.

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Health systems in the European Union aim to provide high-quality, cost-effective care. This is particularly difficult with rare or low-prevalence complex diseases or conditions. Between 5.000 and 8.000 rare diseases affect the daily lives of around 30 million people in the EU.

More information about European Reference Networks (ERNs)

Overview of all Networks

The first ERNs were launched in March 2017, involving more than 900 highly-specialised healthcare units from over 300 hospitals in 26 Member States. 24 ERNs are working on a range of thematic issues including bone disorders, childhood cancer and immunodeficiency.

Network Name Description
ERN BOND European Reference Network on bone disorders
ERN CRANIO European Reference Network on craniofacial anomalies and ear, nose and throat (ENT) disorders
Endo-ERN European Reference Network on endocrine conditions
ERN EpiCARE European Reference Network on epilepsies
ERKNet European Reference Network on kidney diseases
ERN-RND European Reference Network on neurological diseases
ERNICA European Reference Network on inherited and congenital anomalies
ERN LUNG European Reference Network on respiratory diseases
ERN Skin European Reference Network on skin disorders
ERN EURACAN European Reference Network on adult cancers (solid tumours)
ERN EuroBloodNet European Reference Network on haematological diseases
ERN eUROGEN European Reference Network on urogenital diseases and conditions
ERN EURO-NMD European Reference Network on neuromuscular diseases
ERN EYE European Reference Network on eye diseases
ERN GENTURIS European Reference Network on genetic tumour risk syndromes
ERN GUARD-HEART European Reference Network on diseases of the heart
ERN ITHACA European Reference Network on congenital malformations and rare intellectual disability
MetabERN European Reference Network on hereditary metabolic disorders
ERN PaedCan European Reference Network on paediatric cancer (haemato-oncology)
ERN RARE-LIVER European Reference Network on hepatological diseases
ERN ReCONNET European Reference Network on connective tissue and musculoskeletal diseases
ERN RITA European Reference Network on immunodeficiency, autoinflammatory and autoimmune diseases
ERN TRANSPLANT-CHILD European Reference Network on Transplantation in Children
VASCERN European Reference Network on Rare Multisystemic Vascular Diseases