ECDC hosts MediPIET training centre forum

News story

From 16 to 18 May, ECDC hosted a hybrid meeting for the National Focal Points and alumni fellows from the Mediterranean and Black Sea Programme for Intervention Epidemiology Training network (MediPIET) to discuss how to further improve the MediPIET structure and training activities.

Picture of attendees of MediPIET training forum
Attendees of the MediPIET training centre forum

The three-day meeting brought together 16 representatives from EU candidate and potential candidate countries and European Neighbourhood Policy partner countries. 

A key deliverable of MediPIET is to set up a sustainable alumni network to support the programme’s long-term objective of enhancing health security in the Mediterranean and Black Sea region. The existing alumni already constitute a key source of expertise in public health and field epidemiology. The aim of the discussion was to establish ways to further develop and strengthen the existing network of graduated fellows. 

A number of partner countries highlighted the need to widen the alumni network to include possibilities for national experts, trainers, and other external participants to contribute to the network. The idea of one core MediPIET network aligned with a number of satellite networks - based on participation level and professional expertise - was discussed as a possible solution to further empower and expand the network. 

Participants also discussed how to define selection criteria for future MediPIET fellows and Training Sites in order to ensure a sustainable and active professional network of field epidemiologists and effective fellowships to the long-term benefit of the public heath sectors in the partner countries.  

There was broad support for the idea of making the MediPIET programme more attractive by inviting alumni fellows to play a visible role in future MediPIET training programmes, for instance as trainers, fellow supervisors, or associated national experts, which would also contribute to further strengthen the network. 

Other proposals on how to make the MediPIET programme more attractive, included ideas to create an alumni online platform, allowing former fellows to easier communicate their scientific work with each other and sharing case studies and articles. 

National focal points discussed possible updates to the existing MediPIET curriculum and how to support the training sites in partner countries and to ensure more time for the fellows to work on MediPIET related activities during the programme. 

The importance of showing the large impact that the MediPIET has had for public health and COVID-19 response in partner countries was stated. In particular the examples of where MediPIET graduates have been instrumental in cascading knowledge in partner countries through training of trainers and in the establishment of intermediate and frontline FETPs were mentioned. Two working groups among NFPTs were established with focus on Visibility and Impact of MediPIET, as well as on Sustainability and Accreditation of MediPIET.  


The Mediterranean and Black Sea Programme for Intervention Epidemiology Training (MediPIET) aims to enhance health security in the Mediterranean and the Black Sea region. It does so by supporting capacity building for prevention and control of threats posed by communicable diseases through the implementation of a long-term regional Field Epidemiology Training Programme (FETP), Training of Trainers activities (ToTs), annual scientific events and other networking activities.  

MediPIET was set up in 2013 at the initiative of the European Commission with the aim of reinforcing health security capacities across the European neighbourhood regions. The programme has been implemented across four phases, starting with a two-year establishment phase led by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) (2013-2014). Since mid-2021, ECDC implements MediPIET as an integral part of the EU Initiative on Health Security

The MediPIET Cohort 4 started its training on 15 September 2021. It includes 16 fellows from 11 partner countries of the EU Initiative on Health Security.  Cohort 5, starting in September 2022, is currently being selected. 

The EU Initiative on Health Security is a five-year programme (2020–2025) aimed at enhancing public health preparedness and response capacities of the European Union enlargement and the European Neighbourhood partner countries.