Surveillance for NCDs and Health Promotion: An Issue of Theory and Method

  • Stefano Campostrini


Surveillance has been for long time a core issue for infectious diseases, and it is still one of the main focuses for those working in public health. In the recent years, parallel to the rising importance of NCDs, we have seen a growing demand for information, particularly on the “causes” of NCDs, the risk factors, and the other determinants of NCDs and chronic diseases (WHO 2002). Initially it has been thought that the usual health (cross-sectional) surveys were sufficient to offer information on changes and trends over time of risk factors and other related variables, but soon (although not obviously for many decision makers and practitioners) it has been clear that:


Health Promotion Surveillance System Data Linkage Surveillance Data Secular Trend 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



With my colleague David McQueen, we have discussed dynamics and continuity in observation since 1989; at that time he was running one of the first pilot “real” BRFS-type systems in the world at the University of Edinburgh. Since then, we have continued to discuss these issues, and what is written here would not be without this intellectual debate. Many other colleagues have contributed to develop and spread these ideas around the globe, among these Bernard Choi, Vivian Lin, Stefania Salmaso and the Italian PASSI network, Anne Taylor, and many others. To all of them my gratitude, but all the responsibility for what is written is only mine, and in any case never of the institutions I am representing.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University Ca’ Foscari VeniceVeniceItaly

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