How ECDC collects and processes COVID-19 data

Worldwide - weekly reporting

Every week between Monday and Wednesday, a team of epidemiologists screen up to 500 relevant sources to collect the latest figures on the number of COVID-19 cases and deaths reported worldwide for publication on Thursday. The data screening is followed by ECDC’s standard epidemic intelligence process for which every single data entry is validated and documented in an ECDC database. An extract of this database, completed with up-to-date figures and data visualisations, is then shared on the ECDC website, ensuring a maximum level of transparency.

The epidemic intelligence team screens up to 500 sources to collect COVID-19 figures from 196 countries. This includes official websites of Ministries of Health (43% of the total number of sources), public health institutes (9%),  other national authorities (Ministries of Social Services and Welfare, governments, Prime Minister cabinets, cabinets of ministries, health statistics and official response teams) (6%), World Health Organization (2%), and official dashboards and interactive maps from national and international institutions (10%). In addition, ECDC screens official social media accounts as Twitter, Facebook, YouTube or Telegram from national authorities which includes Ministries of Health (28%) and other official sources (e.g. official media outlets) (2%). Several media and social media sources are screened to gather additional information which can be validated with the official sources previously mentioned. Only cases and deaths reported by the national and regional competent authorities from the countries and territories listed are aggregated in our database.

To ensure the accuracy and reliability of the data, this process is being constantly refined. This helps to monitor and interpret the dynamics of the COVID-19 pandemic not only in the European Union (EU), the European Economic Area (EEA), but also worldwide.

Disclaimer: National updates are published at different times and in different time zones. This, and the time ECDC needs to process these data, might lead to discrepancies between the national numbers and the numbers published by ECDC. Users are advised to use all data with caution and awareness of their limitations. Data are subject to retrospective corrections; corrected datasets are released as soon as processing of updated national data has been completed.

EU/EEA Countries - daily reporting

Since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, ECDC’s Epidemic Intelligence team has collected the number of COVID-19 cases and deaths, based on reports from health authorities worldwide. This comprehensive and systematic process was carried out on a daily basis until 14/12/2020.
See the discontinued daily dataset.

From 11 March 2021, ECDC’s Epidemic Intelligence team will again publish the daily number of COVID-19 cases and deaths for EU and EEA countries.

This comprehensive and systematic process is carried out on a daily basis. To insure the accuracy and reliability of the data, this process is being constantly refined.

Every day between 8.00 and 10.00 CET, a team of epidemiologists screens up to 100 relevant sources to collect the latest figures. The data screening is followed by ECDC’s standard epidemic intelligence process for which every single data entry is validated and documented in an ECDC database. An extract of this database, completed with up-to-date figures and data visualisations, is then shared on the ECDC website, ensuring a maximum level of transparency. 

ECDC receives regular updates from EU/EEA countries through the Early Warning and Response System (EWRS), The European Surveillance System (TESSy), the World Health Organization (WHO) and email exchanges with other international stakeholders. This information is complemented by screening up to 100 sources every day to collect COVID-19 figures from 30 EU and EEA countries. Only cases and deaths reported by the national and regional competent authorities from these countries and territories are aggregated in our database.

Disclaimer: National updates are published at different times and in different time zones. This, and the time ECDC needs to process these data, might lead to discrepancies between the national numbers and the numbers published by ECDC. Users are advised to use all data with caution and awareness of their limitations. Data are subject to retrospective corrections; corrected datasets are released as soon as processing of updated national data has been completed.

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Weekly surveillance report on COVID-19

EU level surveillance of COVID-19

Data

The European Surveillance System (TESSy)

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