The ERN-Skin reference centres are present in 18 European countries. The addition of the Affiliated Partners increase therefore the accessibility of the ERNs to patients from non represented EU countries.

4 Affiliated Partners were designated to join the ERN-Skin across 4 countries:

 Mater Dei Hospital – Malta
Children’s Clinical University Hospital, Riga – Latvia
Centre Hospitalier du Luxembourg – Luxemburg
Clinical Institute for medical genetics, University Medical Center Ljubljana – Slovenia

With the designation of the Affiliated Partners increased the ERN-Skin coverage to a total of 60 healthcare providers in 22 Member States.

It is anticipated that in most cases Affiliated Partners do not have the same levels of expertise and resources as the current full members of the ERN. Indeed, it would be difficult notably for healthcare providers from a Member State with a very small population to see the same volume of patients with a particular rare disease or complex condition.

The ERN-Skin expects that through such collaborations, specialised knowledge will transfer from the current ERN healthcare providers and their clinical teams to the healthcare professionals in the Affiliated Partners, thereby raising their levels of expertise over time.