Special Reviews

Responding to the Challenge of Communicable Disease in Europe

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Science  15 Mar 2002:
Vol. 295, Issue 5562, pp. 2047-2050
DOI: 10.1126/science.1070025

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Abstract

In the 1960s and 1970s, communicable disease seemed a minor threat, but since then the emergence of new infections and the reemergence of old diseases has provoked a renewed focus on European communicable disease surveillance and control. A “network approach” among European countries has been successful in detecting some international outbreaks, but management and funding aspects remain unresolved. Surveillance outside the European Union has faced new challenges as a result of economic and political change following the collapse of communism. Subsequently, innovative international surveillance schemes are currently being implemented in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union. The challenge for surveillance in Europe is to ensure that it has the capacity to meet both the needs of today and the diseases of the future.

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