• May 13, 2017

    Mandatory vaccinations for both healthcare workers and the public can obtain a rapid improvement in immunization rates, but in the end have high cost, especially in term of litigation. The same results can be achieved putting resources into better organization and communication programs. This is the opinion of Darina O’Flanagan, previous Director of Health Protection Surveillance Centre Ireland and a member of the Advisory Forum of the European Centre for Disease Control since its inception in 2005 up to 2016. She was also one of the founder partners of the European Vaccine Network VENICE and is participating to Pandem project, on behalf of the WHO Regional Office for Europe.

  • February 1, 2017

    Most emerging diseases come from animals (zoonosis). Therefore, surveillance needs to keep an eye on viruses and other microorganisms that could be transmitted to humans, acquiring the capability to spread among people. Ilaria Capua, director of the One Health Excellence Centre at the Emerging Pathogens Institute of the University of Florida, USA, recommends not letting our guard down.

  • October 24, 2016

    While USA recommend universal flu vaccination for 6 months age, some European countries have different strategies, targeting only children with chronic diseases. Susanna Esposito, professor of Paediatrics at the University of Milan, Italy and president of WAIDID (World Association for Infectious Diseases) advocates for a wider coverage against influenza in healthy children as well.

  • October 11, 2016

    Preparedness is also made of vigilance towards new infectious threats. Professor Bert Niesters from the University of Groningen, in the Netherlands, tells ASSET an example of spontaneous cooperation among 42 laboratories from more than 20 countries in Europe in facing an emerging, dangerous infection: enterovirus D68 respiratory epidemic in 2014-2015. That experience is now going on, taking the name of EUROTYPE.

  • September 21, 2016

    While the number of human cases of H7N9 bird flu is rising in China, and H5N1 is a persistent threat, different strategies of prevention are being considered. In a “one health” approach, vaccination of poultry is one of the possibilities, according to Ivan Hung, Clinical Associate Professor and Honorary Consultant in the Department of Medicine at the Queen Mary Hospital of the University of Hong Kong.

Gender Platform

Best Practice Platform

Gender Platform

Best Practice Platform

Persons over the age of 65 have a higher risk for severe influenza-related complications and have the highest risk of mortality from influenza. Vaccination of older persons have traditionally been the main focus of influenza vaccine policy, and while vaccines are not as efficient in this population as in younger adults, it still remains the most effective public health tool to protect against influenza (WHO 2012). Vaccination recommendations vary slightly between countries in Europe, however almost all cover older people as a specific target group (Endrich et al 2009).

The debate on how to address the spread of incorrect information about vaccines and science in general, as never before, is affecting the main stakeholders in health and scientific communication.
Current vaccination campaigns aimed to address vaccine hesitancy do not work or do not work enough.

ASSET is close to its conclusion and a concluding conference will be held in Rome, on October 30-31, to present all the main outcomes of the project. This event will take place at the hotel NH Roma Leonardo Da Vinci and will be targeted to a selected audience of EU stakeholders and policy makers. It is conceived as a mobilization and mutual learning event at local, national and international levels on Science in Society related issues in epidemics and pandemics.

Work Packages

Dialogue & Participation
Study & Analysis
Action Plan Definition
Citizen Consultation
Mobilization and Mutual Learning
Policy Watch
Communication
Evaluation
Legacy
Management

Partners

MMLAP and other EU Projects

Health system analysis to support capacity development in response to the threat of pandemic influenza in Asia
Making society an active participant in water adaptation to global change
Public Participation in Developing a Common Framework for Assessment and Management of Sustainable Innovation
Effective communication in outbreak management: development of an evidence-based tool for Europe
Developing the framework for an epidemic forecast infrastructure
European monitoring of excess mortality for public health action
Modelling the spread of pandemic influenza and strategies for its containment and mitigation
Cost-effectiveness assessment of european influenza human pandemic alert and response strategies
Bridging the gap between science, stakeholders and policy makers
Promotion of immunization for health professionals in Europe
Towards inclusive research programming for sustainable food innovations
Medical ecosystem – personalized event-based surveillance
Studying the many and varied economic, social, legal and ethical aspects of the recent developments on the Internet, and their consequences for the individual and society at large
Knowledge-based policy-making on issues involving science, technology and innovation, mainly based upon the practices in Parliamentary Technology Assessment
Assessment of the current pandemic preparedness and response tools, systems and practice at national, EU and global level in priority areas
Analysis of innovative public engagement tools and instruments for dynamic governance in the field of Science in Society
Public Engagement with Research And Research Engagement with Society
Computing Veracity – the Fourth Challenge of Big Data
Providing infrastructure, co-ordination and integration of existing clinical research networks on epidemics and pandemics
Creating mechanisms for effectively tackling the scientific and technology related challenges faced by society
Improving respect of ethics principles and laws in research and innovation, in line with the evolution of technologies and societal concerns
Creating a structured dialogue and mutual learning with citizens and urban actors by setting up National Networks in 10 countries across Europe
Identifying how children can be change agents in the Science and Society relationship
Establishing an open dialogue between stakeholders concerning synthetic biology’s potential benefits and risks
Transparent communication in Epidemics: Learning Lessons from experience, delivering effective Messages, providing Evidence