Catalogue of courses on prevention and control of communicable diseases (ASPHER)

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The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) and the Association of Schools of Public Health in the European Region (ASPHER) have agreed to collaborate in the training of public health professionals in competencies for prevention and control of communicable diseases. The collaboration between ECDC and ASPHER facilitates the connections between academia and the public health institutes, translating the collaboration at EU level to national level in particular in the area of serious cross border threats to health. The collection of the training offer and competences by European Schools of Public Health is essential and therefore complements the ECDC training offer. The aim of the present catalogue is to map the strengths of the schools and academic departments of public health members of ASPHER regarding their resources and competencies in the area of communicable disease prevention and control, and their current offer of training activities in that area of knowledge.

ECDC and its collaboration to continuous professional development

ECDC is the official European Union (EU) agency with a mission to identify, assess and communicate current and emerging threats to human health posed by infectious diseases. Article 9.6 of the ECDC founding Regulation (851/2004) states, ‘The Centre shall, as appropriate, support and coordinate training programmes in order to assist Member States and the Commission to have sufficient numbers of trained specialists, in particular in epidemiological surveillance and field investigations, and to have a capability to define health measures to control disease outbreaks. This is in agreement with Decision 1082/2013/EU on serious cross-border threats to health, which calls for consultations aimed at 'supporting the implementation of core capacity requirements for surveillance and response’. ECDC is committed to continue strengthening its training networks in order to find synergies between the various training providers in the field across Europe and facilitate the broad incorporation of the defined EU core competencies for disease prevention and control into the formal activities of training partners across Europe, including schools of public health and universities.

ECDC activities on public health training 

ECDC training programmes involve fellowships in intervention epidemiology (EPIET) and public health microbiology (EUPHEM), and continuous professional development in relevant public health domains. Online resources and e-learning courses are also key components of the ECDC training portfolio. 

ECDC activities on public health training

ECDC training activities are focused in three areas: training programmes in intervention epidemiology, country support, and virtual tools for public health training.

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The Association of Schools of Public Health in the European Region (ASPHER) is the key independent European organisation dedicated to strengthening the role of public health by improving education and training of public health professionals for both practice and research.

ECDC training programmes

Training tools

ECDC provides tools for online training in disease prevention and control, such as the FEM wiki and the ECDC Virtual Academy

Training for public health professionals

ECDC supports the countries in the area of training for public health professionals through consultations on training strategy and needs, providing core competencies and instructional design, delivery of training.

ECDC Virtual Academy (EVA)

An online training platform in the area of disease prevention and control, with open and restricted courses, webinars and video lectures

Fellowship programme: EPIET/EUPHEM

The ECDC Fellowship Programme is a two-year competency based training with two paths: the field epidemiology path (EPIET) and the public health microbiology path (EUPHEM).

Continuous professional development programme (CPDP)

With a spirit of lifelong learning, ECDC offers a professional development programme for communicable disease prevention and control professionals with responsibility for serious cross-border health threats.