Contribution of Regional Networks to the Control of Cross-Border Public Health Threats: EpiSouth in the Mediterranean Region and Southeast Europe

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article


Countries around the Mediterranean Sea share epidemiologic characteristics and public health problems. From 2007 to 2013, a Mediterranean collaborating framework called the EpiSouth Network was established to share knowledge and develop joint activities. Under the coordination of the Italian National Public Health Institute (ISS), this network implemented 2 projects, the first focused on communicable disease surveillance and training and the second on strengthening preparedness for common health threats and biosecurity risks. After the first 3 years of activity, the network included public health institutes, ministries of health, and laboratories of 27 countries in southern Europe, the Balkans, North Africa, and the Middle East. The network worked in collaboration with and with the support of the European Commission, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, the World Health Organization, and the Italian Ministry of Health. This article provides an overview of the key strategic approaches and achievements of this regional network, as well as its impact on public health policies and current projects. Through this example, we discuss how regional collaborative networks can contribute to the development of public health policies on the control of cross-border public health threats.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)418-431
Number of pages14
JournalHealth security
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1 2017



  • Epidemic management/response
  • Infectious diseases
  • International coordination
  • Public health preparedness/ response
  • Surveillance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Emergency Medicine
  • Safety Research
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

Cite this