New challenges and priorities are given in the EU Health programme 2007-2013. The objectives of the programme are to improve citizens’ health security, to promote health to improve prosperity and solidarity, and to generate and disseminate health knowledge. If challenges and priorities have been defined globally for rare diseases by the European Commission, persons involved in rare anaemias have taken the opportunity to contribute to the empowerment of patients with rare anaemias. One of the ENERCA partners objectives was the mapping of existing centres that take care of patients with rare anaemias in Europe. Another goal was to obtain a directory of facilities available per centre for patients with rare anaemias. We thought that with those results it could realistically help to define a consensus regarding the criteria to be recognised as a centre of expertise for haemoglobinopathies and very rare anaemias.