Surveillance and outbreak report Open Access
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In Italy a national Plan for the surveillance of imported and autochthonous human vector-borne diseases (chikungunya, dengue, Zika virus disease and West Nile virus (WNV) disease) that integrates human and veterinary (animals and vectors) surveillance, is issued and revised annually according with the observed epidemiological changes. Here we describe results of the WNV integrated veterinary and human surveillance systems in Italy from 2008 to 2015. A real time data exchange protocol is in place between the surveillance systems to rapidly identify occurrence of human and animal cases and to define and update the map of affected areas i.e. provinces during the vector activity period from June to October. WNV continues to cause severe illnesses in Italy during every transmission season, albeit cases are sporadic and the epidemiology varies by virus lineage and geographic area. The integration of surveillance activities and a multidisciplinary approach made it possible and have been fundamental in supporting implementation of and/or strengthening preventive measures aimed at reducing the risk of transmission of WNV trough blood, tissues and organ donation and to implementing further measures for vector control.


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