Brussels, Belgium 4 April 2023—A broad coalition of endocrine patient representatives and experience experts for over 400,000,000 European and international patients have today called on EU legislators to publish the revised REACH proposal without any further delay and no later than June 2023.
Citing the urgent and immediate need to minimise exposure to Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals (EDCs) in the interest of public health, the patients insist that flaws in the REACH regulation must be addressed without delay. EDCs are not a compromise area, and extending the current legislation is required to fulfil the mentioned objectives.
The petition was launched by the Patient Advocacy Group of European Society of Endocrinology (EPAG) and signed until now by 8 international patient associations representing about 300 national patient organisations across the world and more than 40 national endocrine patient (informing) organisations. Together they represent the European and international endocrine patient community. The petition has been submitted to the European Commission.
The patients are extremely concerned that the current REACH regulation does not effectively address the numerous health impacts stemming from EDC exposure. The necessary steps to reduce exposure to hazardous EDCs and establish lasting protection for human health can only come in a revision of REACH itself.
EDCs are not an area for compromise. An immediate and rigorous revision and extension to the current legislation is needed to effectively address the many current adverse health impacts. Any further delay to phase out of EDCs is unacceptable.
EDCs, which include bisphenols, phthalates, and PFAS, among other chemicals in commerce, are pervasive and linked to serious adverse effects on endocrine systems leading to diseases such as infertility, diabetes, cancer, and altered neurological development.
Health impacts, impacts on the quality of life and impacts of social exclusion of patients from EDC exposures are widespread and cause suffering for patients and their relatives throughout the European Union. Moreover, individuals such as pregnant women and children are uniquely susceptible to the effects of endocrine disruption, meaning that action now can prevent harm to current and future generations.
In addition to the huge impact on human and ecological health, EDCs are also linked to massive economic costs borne by EU citizens: conservative estimates have linked EDC exposures to some €157bn, in additional health care costs and lost earnings.