E-17/20 Zvonimir Cogelja v The Directorate of Health


E-17/20 Zvonimir Cogelja v The Directorate of Health


Klik hier voor het dossier van het EVA-hof (voor zover beschikbaar).

Deadlines: Motivation ministry:    31 December 2020
Written observations:                    16 February 2021

Keywords : recognition of professional qualifications;

Subject :

-           Directive 2005/36/EC on the recognition of professional qualifications ;

Facts of the case:

The plaintiff is a Swedish doctor. He has never lived, studied or worked in Iceland. He completed his medical studies in Stockholm in 2003 and received a licence from the Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare to practice as a physician in 2005. After receiving his licence, the plaintiff began specialist studies in plastic surgery. The plaintiff states that he had pursued his specialist training for a total of 95 months in Sweden, Switzerland, Norway and Germany. In 2013, the defendant (the Directorate of Health) granted the plaintiff an unrestricted licence to practice as a doctor in Iceland, with reference to his Swedish licence. In 2014, the plaintiff received authorisation from the defendant to use the professional designation “specialist in plastic surgery” and to practise as such in Iceland. In 2018, the plaintiff requested a certificate attesting his professional qualifications which would confirm that his training met the requirements of Directive 2005/36/EC (a CCPS certificate). He had previously received CCPS certificates from the defendant. The defendant rejected this request because it was unable to attest that the plaintiff’s training had been in accordance with the requirements of Directive 2005/36. The defendant referred to changes in the working procedure because of criticism by the EFTA Surveillance Authority pointing out that the way specialist licences had been issued in Iceland had not been in conformity with Directive 2005/36. As a consequence, the defendant changed its practice. The exhibits in the case include a letter from the EFTA Surveillance Authority that states that Directive 2005/36 does not authorise EEA States to issue specialist licences or “certificates of conformity” stating that training is in conformity with the requirements of the Directive in the case of training courses which EEA States do not themselves organise in full. The parties do not dispute the fact that training in plastic surgery, as a specialist medical discipline, is not available in Iceland. The plaintiff lodged an appeal to the Icelandic Ministry of Health against the rejection of his request by the defendant. The Ministry of Health upheld the defendant’s decision by its ruling. Subsequently, the plaintiff brought the present action, by which he endeavours to have the defendant’s decision annulled.

Request for an advisory opinion:

Does Article 25 of Directive 2005/36/EC on the recognition of professional qualifications (see also point (c) of the first paragraph of Article 3, and Articles 21 and 26 of that directive), require that an EEA State that issues evidence of qualifications (called a “specialist licence” (Icelandic: sérfræðileyfi)) for a doctor that enjoys automatic recognition in other EEA States must itself administer the training, recognition of which is sought through the issuance of such evidence, with the result that an EEA State is not to issue such evidence if the training did not take place in that State?

Cited (recent) case-law:

Policy Area: OCW; EZK;