About EMHA

The European Migraine & Headache Alliance is a non-profit umbrella organization, that includes over 33 patient associations for Migraine, Cluster Headache, Trigeminal Neuralgia and other headache diseases, across Europe.

The Alliance was launched in 2006 and since then, being the development of European umbrella organizations a natural progression with more relevance for European nations. Our aim is to speak on behalf of and to advocate for the rights and needs of the 138 million people in Europe living with headache disorders.

EMHA is an active member of the European Federation of Neurological Alliances [EFNA], the International Association of Patient Organizations [IAPO], the European Patients Forum [EPF] and also works closely with organizations such as the European Headache Federation [EHF], European Brain Council [EBC] and others.

Organization chart

Patrick Little


2018–Present: President.

Elena Ruiz de la Torre

Executive Director, Company Secretary and Immediate Past President

2016–Present: Executive Director, Company Secretary and Immediate Past President.

Kalina Tyminski

Board Member

2017–Present: Board Officer & Cluster Headache Delegate.

Isabel Colomina

Board Member

2016–Present: Member of the Board, Co-opted Officer.


Dr. Paolo Rossi

Dr. Paolo Rossi, was Chief of the Headache Clinic at INI Grottaferrata in Rome and Head of Clinical Neurology at the Nursing School at Tor Vergata University and member of EMHA’s Board.

Paolo was in particular renowned for his international work in Cluster Headache and for passionately and tirelessly working for a better understanding of the condition and for improved treatment to people who suffer.

But mostly Paolo will be remembered by all our members across Europe as a patients champion. His warmth and humanity were felt by everyone who knew him. His untimely death has left us shocked and bereft. We send our deepest sympathy to his wife and two daughters whom he adored.

Patrick Little
President European Migraine and
Headache Alliance.

Strategic plan

With the aim to serve to its mission, EMHA has developed a strategic plan focused in giving the tools and resources to all members of the organization in order to be stronger and more effective as we all row in the same direction.

In order to provide focus and direction to move from plan to action, we design specific projects in improving the lives of patients working actively with EMHA’s members, medical societies and gubernamental institutions to encourage an holistic approach to the understanding of headache disorders, knowing that patients will benefit from our efforts.

As a non-profit association, we encounter with the altruistic collaboration of our sponsors, the pharmaceutic industry. Thanks to them we can face own research and projects such as: Access to Care survey, Migraine at Work, Cluster Headache and Work Life in the European Union survey, among others.


“Migraine is the third most common disease in the world, with an estimated global prevalence of 14.7% (that’s around 1 in 7 people)”. This means that we all should know many more people who suffer migraine, but the truths is we don’t as they don’t mention it.

In order to give voice and visibility to the affected ones, EMHA is trying to show up how extraordinary those sufferers are that try to live a normal life while they have to cope with their Migraine attacks without any help, support or recognition from the Society, becoming the voice of these extraordinary people in Europe.

Therefore EMHA is committed in:

Promote awareness, understanding and recognition of Migraine, Cluster Headache and other headache disorders.
Improve patients’ access to appropriate diagnosis and treatment.


To be the representative of all European Migraine and Headache associations, to help them to spread the voice of headache disorders, to be understood and recognized in all health systems, helping patients to be well informed and have equal access to appropriate diagnosis and treatment.


Being aware of our accountability in representing our members, to our sponsors and to the society in general, EMHA is committed to be transparent and respectful in all its actions.


Being aware of our accountability in representing our members, to our sponsors and to the society in general, EMHA is committed to be transparent and respectful in all its actions.


Working with the pharmaceutical and biotech industries.










We are grateful to have the support
of all of them.

EPF – European Patient Forum
EPF currently represents 74 members, which are national coalitions of patient’ organisations and disease-specific patient organisations working at European level.


World Health Organization
Working through offices in more than 150 countries, WHO staff work side by side with governments and other partners to ensure the highest attainable level of health for all people.


European Union
The European Union (EU) is a political and economic union of 28 member states that are located primarily in Europe.


EHF- European Headache Federation
Since its foundation in 1992, EHF (European Headache Federation), a non-profit organisation, has sought to improve the life of those affected by headache in Europe.


EMA- European Medicines Agency
The Agency is responsible for the scientific evaluation, supervision and safety monitoring of medicines developed by pharmaceutical companies for use in the EU.


Danish Headache Center
The first headache center in Scandinavia to offer a multidisciplinary approach to the diagnosis and treatment of patients with rare or severe headache disorders and cranial neuralgias.

VISIT Danish Headache Center

EFNA- European Federation of Neurological Association
EFNA brings together European umbrella organisations of neurological patient advocacy groups, to work with other associations in the field of neurology in what has been termed a “Partnership for Progress“.


EUPATI- The European Patients’ Academy
EUPATI is a pan-European project implemented as a public-private partnership by a collaborative multi-stakeholder consortium from the pharmaceutical industry, academia, not-for-profit, and patient organisations.


EBC- European Brain Council
The European Brain Council (EBC) is a non-profit organisation gathering patient associations, major brain-related societies as well as industries.


AHMA - American Headache & Migraine Association
The patient arm of the American Headache Society (AHS), is a Headache and Migraine Organization for Patient Empowerment (HOPE).


IHS - Internatinal Headache Society
A world’s leading membership organisation for those with a professional commitment to helping people affected by headache.


PAE - Pain Alliance Europe
PAE aims to promote awareness for chronic pain, to promote a European policy on chronic pain and to reduce the impact of chronic pain on the European society on all areas.


EAN - European Academy of Neurology
Their mission is to foster and support the development of neurological excellence in Europe and across the world, leading to better patient care and outcomes.


IAPO - International Alliance of Patient´s Organizations
IAPO focused on promoting patient-centred healthcare.


ACN - Active Citizen Network
ACN is a flexible network of European civic organizations which are involved as partners in its different projects, addressed to encourage active participation of citizens in European policy-making.



EMHA Report 2020

EMHA’s agenda of 2020 was filled with trips, meetings and events that put migraine on the agenda of European’s and worldwide organizations and policy makers.

Finance Report 2020

EMHA’s finance report of annual incomes and expenses.

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Patrick Little

Patrick Little has been a Board member and Treasurer of EMHA since 2016, very recently he has become President of the EMHA. He is CEO of the Migraine Association of Ireland (MAI) since 2008. During this time he has been involved in discussions with the health authorities in Ireland in drafting a Care Pathway for Headache as part of a Neurology Clinical Programme. He has played an active part in the discussions which led to development of The Governance Code for the Community, Voluntary and Charitable Sector in Ireland.

Patrick is also a Board member of the Neurological Alliance of Ireland, a member of the National Council of the Disability Federation of Ireland, and an active member of IPPOSI- the Irish Platform for Patients’ Organisations, Science & Industry which houses the EUPATI project.

Prior to working with MAI he lived in Scotland for 30 years where he worked in the NGO mental health sector. During that time he:

  • Represented the United Kingdom on two Pan-European projects on young people’s mental health. He was also the Scottish representative on a European project looking at Social Exclusion and Mental Health.
  • Was part of a group which helped the European Commission examine its relationship with the World Health Organisation in relation to mental health.
  • Carried out a Baseline Study for a Young People’s Mental Health Project in Vanuatu, South Pacific.
  • Was a member of the Scottish Needs Assessment Programme (SNAP) Core Working Group which completed a two-year review of Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services in Scotland.
  • Was a core member of a Planning Group which produced a Framework for the Prevention and Reduction of Suicide in Scotland.
  • Was a member of Scottish Government’s Planning Group for tackling Social Exclusion of people with mental health problems.
  • Was an active member of local Drug and Alcohol Action Teams.
  • Chaired and led the Scottish Self-Harm Forum for several years.

Elena Ruiz de la Torre

The European Migraine & Headache Alliance (EMHA) is a non-profit, patient umbrella group which was launched in 2006. Since then, the Alliance has grown to represent patient groups from across the continent. At this moment, EMHA includes 30 Organizations from different Countries. Each year, on September 12th, the European Migraine & Headache Alliance organizes European Migraine Day of Action as well as an awareness Day on Cluster Headache at the European Parliament.

Together with their partner organisations, EMHA voices the views and concerns of headache patients across Europe. Their aim is to promote awareness and understanding of migraine and other primary headache disorders and seek improved access to appropriate diagnosis and treatment for all.

2015-Present : Board Member of the Spanish Platform of Chronic Diseases
2005–2016 : President, Asociación Española de Pacientes con Cefalea (AEPAC), Spain
2014–2015 : Vice President, European Headache Alliance (EMHA), Belgium
2007-2012 : Treasurer, European Headache Alliance (EMHA), Belgium

Kalina Tyminski

Kalina was diagnosed with Cluster Headache (CH) in 2008 after 2 years of attending different clinicians seeking treatment for her severe headache symptoms. In 2016 she became President of AFVAC (Association Française Contre l’Algie Vasculaire de la Face), a patient association for patients working in partnership with healthcare professionals, founded on 2005 for the advocacy of Cluster Headache patients. Since June 2017 she has been one of the leaders of the Cluster Headache Special Interest group of the European Migraine and Headache Alliance (EMHA), an umbrella European patient organization. The Special Interest Group was created to raise awareness about CH and reinforce CH patients’ advocacy at a European level. At the same time she became a board
member of EMHA.

Since September 2018 Kalina has been a member of the International Headache Society’s Global Patient Advocacy Coalition and the same year she was rewarded by the European Federation of Neurological Associations for her contribution and dedication to the cause of Migraine and Headaches.

Isabel Colomina

2016 – Present: President. Asociación Española de Migraña y Cefalea (AEMICE), Spain.

2014-2016 – Member of the Board: Asociación Española de Migraña y Cefalea (AEMICE), Spain.

2016- Member of the Board of EMHA