The EU's response to the coronavirus crisis was a mess. Now, Commission president Ursula von der Leyen is determined to guide a successful wind-down of the Europe-wide lockdown. JOHN DOWNING answers all of your questions.
What is the EU's role in this?
It has more responsibility than power on public health matters as member governments have the major role. But new Commission President Ursula von der Leyen was refreshingly candid in admitting the EU had come near to "tearing itself apart" in the early days of the pandemic.
Some member states just banned the cross-border sales of medical goods, flouting the EU single-market rules in place since 1993.
Member states closed borders without advising their neighbours in good time. There were truck tailbacks of up to 40km at some border crossings. People in Italy and Spain - the first to be hit hardest - felt very badly let down.
The European Union has moved to head off a chaotic and potentially disastrous easing of restrictions that are limiting the spread of the coronavirus, warning its 27 nations to move very cautiously as they return to normal life and always to base their actions on scientific advice.
What is the EU trying to do now?
The EU's single market stretches from the Ural Mountains on the Russian border all the way to Lisbon, and from Crete to the Arctic Circle, taking in 460million people.
The policy-guiding Commission in Brussels has published a roadmap for the 27 member states in the world's biggest trade bloc aiming to coordinate an exit from the various lockdowns.
Officials say they expect this process to take at least a few months and will involve large-scale testing of people for conronavirus, the constant monitoring of case numbers, and keeping a keen eye on hospitals' abilities to cope with the crisis.
Is this a one-size-fits-all approach from the EU to easing the lockdown?
No - very definitely not. Neither is it a signal that Brussels is backing an early lifting of lockdown.
Already, Austria, the Czech Republic and Denmark are slowly lifting some lockdown measures. Others, like Ireland and France, have extended the shutdown.
The EU Commission is trying to get member governments to follow a similar pattern, be led by experts' advice, and consult their immediate neighbours and the other EU member states.
It seems reasonable, since 80,000 people have now died in Europe from the disease. That's about two-thirds of the global toll.
What does the EU have to say about the dangers of ending the lockdown?
The EU Commission frankly warns that lifting restrictions will "unavoidably lead to a corresponding increase in new cases."
It stresses the need for good communications between EU states. The advice from Brussels is that the 27 member states' "action should be gradual."
It suggests that a return to business operations should be phased in by sectors, based on things like the economic importance of the industry, or the kinds of shift work that could be introduced. Social distancing must be maintained and there should be no general return to work.
What about shops, pubs, and social life generally?
The EU advises that shops, restaurants and bars can gradually reopen - but with limits on the number of people who can enter, and restricted opening hours.
For schools, they recommend smaller classes to allow students to work at a safer distance from each other. Lunch breaks could be set at different times and internet learning should be preferred where possible. They recommend that a gap of around one month should be left between any phased opening-up steps to monitor their impact.
Elderly people should be protected for longer, while restaurants, bars and cinemas could resume business with restricted opening hours and limits on the number of people who could enter.
There's bad news for sports fans, with the suggestion that blocking mass gatherings like festivals and concerts would be among the last to be lifted.
How is Ireland fixed in all of this?
Ireland's response is well-regarded in Brussels, as well as elsewhere internationally. But the bugbear remains the border with the north.
The EU lays big stress on cross-border consultation. The problem continues to be that the North is following UK coronavirus rules - and the UK is Brexiting the EU.