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Networks and partnerships



EUVAC.NET was a European surveillance -In September 2011, the responsibilities of the EUVAC.NET were transferred to ECDC.

EUVAC.NET was a European surveillance network for selected vaccine-preventable diseases hosted at the Staten Serum Institute (SSI), Denmark. It incorporated all 27 EU Member States together with Croatia, Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and Turkey. The network was created in 1999 in line with the European Parliament and Council Decision No. 2119/98/EC which formed the basis of creating networks for the epidemiological surveillance and control of communicable diseases in the European Community.

European Invasive Bacterial Diseases Surveillance Network (EU-IBD)

The activities are aimed at integrating surveillance of all invasive bacterial infections caused by N. meningitidies, H. influenzae and S. pneumoniae from an epidemiological and laboratory point of view in order to contribute to reducing the burden of diseases associated with invasive bacterial infections.

The activities include annual data collection, evaluation, dissemination of relevant scientific and technical data, promoting the harmonization and external quality assurance of laboratory methods and improve the laboratory capacity to accurately characterise the isolates of N. meningitidies, H. influenzae and S. pneumoniae.

Since October 2007, the responsibilities of the former Invasive Bacterial Infections Surveillance Network (EU-IBIS) were transferred to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC).

European Diphtheria Surveillance Network (EDSN) 

The activities are aimed at integrating surveillance, which covers all diphtheria diseases caused by toxigenic C. diphtheriae and C. ulcerans from an epidemiology and laboratory point of view.

Although diphtheria (caused by toxigenic C. diphtheriae)  is a rare disease in the EU region, the World Health Organization (WHO) elimination targets  for Western and Central Europe are met and more than 10 years past the elimination target date, the elimination goal of indigenous diphtheria strains has not been met in the entire WHO EURO region (see  “Manual for the Management and Control of Diphtheria in the European Region, WHO EURO 1994” ). The indigenous transmission continues in Latvia, Ukraine and in Russian Federation, and epidemic diphtheria could return to the European Union. Therefore, high vaccination coverage must be sustained, adult booster coverage increased, and surveillance and laboratory capacity maintained.

Starting February 2010, the responsibility for the activities of the European Diphtheria Surveillance Network has been transferred to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC).

European Network on Immunisation Policies- Vaccine European New Integrated Collaboration Effort: The Venice Project

The VENICE project principal aims are:

  1. to encourage collection and dissemination of knowledge and best practice relating to vaccination; 
  2. to further develop collaboration and partnership between Member States.There is the need to improve knowledge on how vaccinations are performed across the EU, to agree on indicators for monitoring vaccination programs, to define models of decision making processes, to integrate available information and identify gaps and added values. 

VENICE specific objectives are:

  • To create an EU vaccination network able to collect and collate information on vaccination programs in each Member State.
  • To create a resource able to provide advice and support to single member states by integrating available tools and knowledge on various vaccine-related issues
  • To create a network able to provide support in the development of preparedness strategies that include immunisation programs
  • To define common indicators for monitoring, in a comparable way, the immunisation programs across Member States and their constituent regions.
  • To encourage a rational approach to vaccination policy decision-making processes by providing standardized tools.
  • To provide MSs with the necessary information regarding safe vaccination and support capacity building in areas dealing with contraindication and the management of Adverse Events following vaccination.



The EUSAFEVAC project was carried out in 2001 to 2003, funded by EU DG Research. The Swedish Institute for Infectious Disease Control (SMI) coordinated the project. The EUSAFEVAC project aimed at improving the reporting system for adverse events following immunisation (AEFI). The EUSAFEVAC project has provided tools for improved safety surveillance of immunisations by:

  • providing a template for systematic reviews of available evidence,
  • guidelines for standardised reporting of AEFI using standardised case definitions,
  • web-based models for immunisation registers that may be adapted and used in all EU-member countries; and
  • examples of active surveillance tailored at specific events signalled by routine passive surveillance.



The overall aim of ESEN2 is to co-ordinate and harmonise throughout Europe the serological surveillance of immunity to a variety of vaccine preventable infections. ESEN2 is a further development of the previous ESEN research project. In ESEN, the methodologies for sera collection and testing were successfully harmonised for 5 different antigens (measles, mumps, rubella, pertussis and diphtheria) in 7 European countries. ESEN2 extends the ESEN model to include more European countries (16 in all) including those from outside the European Union. Furthermore, ESEN2 also includes several other vaccine preventable diseases – Varicella Zoster, Hepatitis A and Hepatitis B.

The Brighton Collaboration

The Brighton Collaboration is committed to develop standardized, widely disseminated and globally accepted case definitions for an exhaustive number of AEFI as well as guidelines for data collection, analysis, and presentation.

Collaboration, officially launched in autumn 2000, consists of volunteers from patient care, public health, scientific, pharmaceutical, regulatory and professional organizations coming from developed and developing countries. They are experienced and knowledgeable in the field of immunisation safety and corresponding medical specialties.

Finalised definitions and guidelines are available on the Brighton Collaboration website, as well as the list of documents currently in progress.

External links

European Medicines agency: Vaccine working party documents

World health organization: Immunization, Vaccines and Biologicals

World health organization: Vaccine safety web sites meeting credibility and content good information practices criteria

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Vaccines and immunizations

Canadian Coalitation for immunization awareness & promotion

© European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) 2005 - 2017