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LogoChronic diseases in the 21st century: from individual choices to community policies. The specific role of surveillance.


The 5th International Conference at the Italian Istituto Superiore di Sanità


Chronic diseases remain the leading causes of morbidity and mortality throughout the world. The prevalence of newly diagnosed chronic conditions in the general population continues to increase, paradoxically as a result of improved living conditions and improvements in medical care that have reduced risk of premature death. The continuing public health efforts against chronic diseases is critical because of its economic impact on health care, and for the development of specific prevention policies by public health authorities.



Although the effects of chronic disease
prevention are usually measured in the long
run, the extent to which public health messages and interventions have been disseminated, understood and implemented by the public can be measured in the shorter term using standardised and reliable methods. Behavioral Risk Factor (BRF) surveillance is the prime tool to obtain information about behaviors relevant to the development of chronic diseases. Surveillance is essential in monitoring and therefore evaluating a variety of public health interventions, and in providing data to inform the PH policies. Several theoretical, methodological, and practical issues in risk factor surveillance remain to be resolved and the Conference will provide the occasion for discussion and exchanges of experiences among surveillance experts, policy makers, chronic disease specialists and other related public health professionals.

The Italian Ministry of Health and the Istituto Superiore di Sanità are glad to announce and to host the 5th Conference in Rome.