Applied Infectious Disease Epidemiology Conference, Berlin, November 19-21

Berlin, (PresseBox) - The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control - ECDC - will host its second annual European Scientific Conference on Applied Infectious Disease Epidemiology - ESCAIDE - in Berlin from November 19-21, 2008. ECDC is organizing the event in partnership with the European Programme for Intervention Epidemiology Training (EPIET), the EPIET Alumni network (EAN) and TEPHINET EUROPE (Training Programs in Epidemiology and Public Health Interventions Network). It is a unique opportunity for frontline professionals from national disease control institutes to engage with each other and the wider scientific community. More information can be found at www.escaide.eu.

Last year more than 500 delegates from over 40 countries attended the first of these conferences, at which highlights included the emergence and spread of antibiotic resistance in Europe, the value of behavioural surveillance as a tool to help prevent HIV/AIDS and TB, and implications for Europe of the outbreak of chikungunya in Ravenna district, Italy.

This year's Conference is expected to attract even more delegates from even more countries to exchange knowledge and experience on a wide range of topics related to applied infectious disease epidemiology. These will include disease outbreaks, surveillance, antimicrobial resistance, healthcare-associated infections, food- and water-borne diseases, zoonoses, vector-borne diseases, vaccine preventable diseases, HIV and other STIs, tuberculosis, respiratory diseases, influenza, modelling and statistics for applied infectious disease epidemiology, methods for microbial identification and environmental and occupational health.

The Conference aims at:

- strengthening and expanding the network of all those involved in applied infectious disease epidemiology;
- sharing scientific knowledge and experience in this field in Europe and internationally; and
- providing a dedicated platform for fellows of the EPIET/FETP (field epidemiology training program) to present their work.

The Conference will be of interest to epidemiologists, microbiologists, clinicians, public health experts, and veterinary and environmental health experts with a professional and scientific interest in applied infectious disease epidemiology.

Over the three-day conference, there will be four plenaries covering:

- Migration and communicable diseases in Europe
- Special needs in communication. How to reach the hard-to-reach?
- The expansion of vector-borne infections in Europe: are we prepared for it?
- Old and new vaccines, old and new challenges In addition, there will be an opportunity for detailed discussion and debate in parallel sessions on specialist topics.

ECDC has called for abstracts in the area of applied public health research, outbreak investigations and evaluation of public health surveillance, or any other area in applied epidemiology or public health practice in which results are linked to public health action.

The conference will be held in the heart of Berlin at the Berliner Congress Center on the historic Alexanderplatz in the shadow of one of the city's leading landmarks, the television tower. Originally designed by Hermann Henselmann, an architect strongly influenced by the Bauhaus school, the centre has been fully renovated.

The ECDC Set up in 2005 and headquartered in Stockholm, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) is a EU agency which aims to strengthen Europe's defences against infectious diseases. ECDC's mission is to identify, assess and communicate current and emerging threats to human health posed by infectious diseases.

In order to achieve its mission, ECDC works in partnership with national health protection bodies across Europe to strengthen and develop continent-wide disease surveillance and early warning systems. By working with experts throughout Europe, ECDC pools Europe's health knowledge, so as to develop authoritative scientific opinions about the risks posed by current and emerging infectious diseases.

EPIET

EPIET is the European Programme for Intervention Epidemiology Training, which provides training and practical experience in intervention epidemiology at the national centres for surveillance and control of communicable diseases in the European Union (EU). Presentation of EPIET diplomas will be the closing event of the Conference.

TEPHINET

Training Programs in Epidemiology and Public Health Interventions Network Inc (TEPHINET) is a professional alliance of field epidemiology training programs (FETPs) located in thirty-two countries around the world. Trainees of these programs master a set of core competencies, vital to the practice of public health, while providing a valuable public health service. TEPHINET's credo is that public health policy ought to be based on good science, and that the most effective way to train field epidemiologists is through an apprenticeship program.

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