About the network
The Healthcare-Associated Infections Surveillance Network (HAI-Net) is a European network for the surveillance of healthcare-associated infections (HAI). The network is coordinated by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC).
The main priorities of HAI-Net are the coordination of the European point prevalence survey of HAI and antimicrobial use in acute care hospitals, the European surveillance of surgical site infections, the European surveillance of HAI in intensive care units and the repeated prevalence surveys of HAI and antimicrobial use in European long-term care facilities.
On this page you can find a list of the national/regional systems for surveillance of healthcare-associated infections within EU and links to their websites:
* The table "Coordination of national/regional surveillance of HCAI" is published in the Annual epidemiological report on communicable diseases in Europe, 2008
IPSE (Improving Patient Safety in Europe)
The IPSE network was the Dedicated Surveillance Network (DSN) in Europe for the surveillance of healthcare-associated infections (HAI) from 2005 to 2008. The scope of the IPSE network was the development of the existing national surveillance initiatives and other approaches for supporting the wider infection control effort in Europe. It consisted of seven work packages covering various areas of HAI surveillance and control. Most of them continued after the transition of IPSE to ECDC (see IPSE transition diagramme to the right).
IPSE was coordinated by the Université Claude Bernard Lyon (UCBL), France; various other centres in Europe were involved in coordination of the work packages. IPSE received funding from the European Commission’s Directorate General for Health and Consumer Affairs (DG SANCO) covering 60% of budget; the remaining 40% were provided by contributions from partners in the network.
HELICS (Hospitals in Europe for Infection Control through Surveillance)
The HELICS network was the predecessor of the IPSE network and was created in 2000 in the context of Decision 2119/EC as the DG SANCO-funded network for the surveillance of HAI. From 2000 to 2002, HELICS standardised the European methodology for the surveillance of surgical site infections (SSIs) and of nosocomial infections in intensive care units (ICUs).The methodology compiled the most frequently implemented modules for surveillance of HAI in the Member States. From 2003 onwards, the HELICS project collected data from national surveillance networks of HAI according to these agreed methods. In 2003, HELICS also developed a protocol for a point prevalence survey of HAI, however without much adherence in Member States in subsequent years. In 2005, HELICS surveillance became a part of IPSE - as one of its work packages.
The HELICS-SSI and HELICS-ICU protocols formed the basis for the current ECDC HAISSI and HAIICU protocols. HAI-Net protocols and more documents are available for national HAI surveillance contact points and experts on the HAI-Net Extranet.
Transition of IPSE and HELICS to ECDC healthcare-associated infections surveillance network (HAI-Net)
In July 2008, coordination of the European surveillance of HAI was transferred from the IPSE network to ECDC. In 2008 and 2009, ECDC continued surveillance of surgical site infections (SSIs) and surveillance of HAI in ICUs following former IPSE/HELICS methods until the full integration of these types of surveillance in ECDC’s TESSy system in October 2010. In addition, the ECDC evaluation of the IPSE network recommended that “The European HAI surveillance needs to cover other types of nosocomial infections besides surgical site infections and ICU-acquired infections in order to estimate and monitor the complete HAI disease burden”.
Following this recommendation, the elaboration of a new European protocol for point prevalence surveys of HAI became an important priority of HAI-Net. In addition, some activities of the former IPSE network were continued through outsourced projects, such as the surveillance of HAI in long-term care facilities (HALT project) and the support to infection control training in Europe (TRICE project).