Types of affiliation

There are four possible types of affiliation with the ERN RARE-LIVER for health care providers:
Full Membership, Affiliated Partnership (including Associated National Centres and Coordination Hubs), Collaborative Partnership or the External Expert status. Full Membership and Affiliated Partnership are types of affiliation officially acknowledged by the European Commission department responsible for EU policy on food safety and health (DG Santé). See below for an overview of the features for the different kinds of affiliation.

For information on patient representation and involvement click here.


Full Membership:

The call for applications for Full Membership 2019 is closed. The decision of whether or not to open a new call will be taken by the European Commission in due course. Until then, application for Full Membership is not possible.

The application for Full Membership comprises 2 steps:

  1. Support of your national health ministry. The “Board of Member States” is the oversight body for the EU and has representatives from all the health ministries for member states; your national board member should be your first contact: https://ec.europa.eu/health/sites/health/files/ern/docs/ern_board_members_en.pdf
  2. Completion of an assessment process which includes a form, a self-assessment and supporting data and (potentially) a site audit. For up to date information see the Commission’s ERN webpages: https://ec.europa.eu/health/ern/policy_en.


Affiliated Partnership

The call for applications for Affiliated Partnership 2019 is closed. The decision of whether or not to open a new call will be taken by the European Commission in due course. Until then, application for affiliated partnership is not possible.

The purpose of European Reference Networks (ERNs) is to enable the sharing of expertise and to improve access to care for patients across the European Union. In order for ERNs to deliver genuine added value to all European Union Member States, legislation makes provision for Member States which do not have representation from a member within an approved ERN to participate through healthcare providers that are designated as “Associated National Centres” or “Coordination Hubs”.

If you are from a member state that does not currently have a full member and are interested in Affiliated Partnership you need to contact your BoMS representative in the first instance. If your country has a full member then your options are either Full Membership (see above) or Collaborative Partnership (see below).


Collaborative Partnership

Application for Collaborative Partnership will be possible again from summer 2020.

This is a looser form of membership which does not bring ERN Centre Status but allows members to develop links with some of the activities of the ERN. This does not have an EU process and is managed by the ERN RARE-LIVER itself. If you are interested in Collaborative partnership please register your interest formally by completing the Collaborative Partnership Form.


Features of ERN affiliation

Full Member

Affiliated Partner/ Associated National Centre

Affiliated Partner/ Coordination Hub

Collaborative Partner

External Expert

Application Process/Eligibility

Board of Member State endorsement required

yes

yes

yes

no

no

Submission of self-assessment and application form to EU required

yes

yes
(less extensive than for Full Members)

yes
(less extensive than for Full Members)

no

no

Is it always possible to apply?

no
(only when the call is open)

no
(only when the call is open)

no
(only when the call is open)

no
(please ask ERN office)

yes

Required to meet ERN RARE-LIVER criteria

yes*

yes**

yes**

yes***

yes
(please ask ERN office)

Is a centre from a non EU member state eligible?

no

no

no

yes

yes

Is a centre from a country already represented in ERN RARE LIVER eligible?

yes

no

no

yes

yes

Membership Benefits

Member of Network Board

yes

yes

yes

no

no

Included on ERN RARE-LIVER mailing list

yes

yes

yes

yes

yes

Access to ERN RARE-LIVER training and education and exchange programmes

yes

yes

yes

yes

yes

Can refer patients to telemedicine platform CPMS

yes

yes

yes

yes

yes

Can have an account for telemedicine platform CPMS

yes

yes

tbc

yes
(Guest account)

yes
(Guest account)

Eligible to become sub-committee or working group member

yes

yes

yes

yes

yes

Access to funding/ resources linked to ERN

yes

yes

yes

no

no

Commitment Required from Members

Recording of key patient outcome data in central registry R-LIVER

yes

yes

yes

yes

no

Providing information as required, to help develop resources (e.g. training materials)

yes

yes

yes

yes

no

Attendance at the Annual Meeting

yes

yes

yes

no

no

Regular Reporting on EU indicators

yes

yes

no

no

no

Regular Reporting on ERN deliverables

yes
(if engaged in Working Packages)

yes
(if engaged in Working Packages)

yes
(if engaged in Working Packages)

yes
(if engaged in Working Packages)

yes
(if engaged in Working Packages)

Regular Reporting on ERN Disease Working Group progress

yes
(if engaged in Disease Working Groups)

yes
(if engaged in Disease Working Groups)

yes
(if engaged in Disease Working Groups)

yes
(if engaged in Disease Working Groups)

yes
(if engaged in Disease Working Groups)

Completion of a brief annual quality improvement plan outlining response to outcome data

yes

yes

no

Engagement with relevant patient organisations

yes

yes

yes

yes

no


ERN RARE LIVER member tasks