What is Ccm

Ccm is the Italian acronym for the National Centre for Disease Prevention and Control. Its task is to liaise between the Ministry of health on the one side, and regional governments on the other as regards surveillance, prevention and promptly responding to emergencies. It was set up by Law 138 of 26 May 2004 (pdf 167 kb) and by the Health Ministry Decree of 1 July 2004 (pdf 124 kb), then amended by the labour, health and social policy Ministry Decree of 18 September 2008 (pdf 51 kb), which redefined its structure.

Over the years, Ccm has acquired a specific identity which makes it unique within the framework of Italian public health; its main features are:

  • an expressed mission: more prevention nationwide and in the national health service practice through strategies and interventions whose efficiency can be demonstrated by solid scientific data
  • a working method based on projects, with clearly defined objectives, procedures, responsibilities, resources and implementation timelines
  • the systematic promotion of discussion within its collegial consulting bodies, and cooperation within Regional Governments‘ technical working groups
  • an appropriate positioning in the public health sector which allows for a connection between working by projects and institutional activities, linking the health service action with large international networks.

The work of Ccm is particularly focused on cohesion and equity, to make sure that, in all Italian regions, all citizens from every social class have the same possibility of accessing prevention measures. The Centre is a bridge between the world of research and health facilities on the one hand, and the best practices and entities being developed on the other, by activating institutional partnerships and professional collaborations: its aim is to build an Italian prevention network. This is how Ccm has become a new public health entity, in line with the regionalization process introduced by the reform of Section V of the Italian Constitution.

The goal of Ccm is to optimise the plans and priority actions in terms of public health nationwide, thus becoming integrated with the existing activities. Since it was established in 2004, more than 200 agreements have been signed in six areas of activity (surveillance, prevention and control; support to the national prevention Plan and to the programme "Gaining Health"; emergencies; communication and documentation; social welfare; the environment) which have involved all Regions and most public health institutions. Another 66 agreements were signed as part of the Ccm 2008 programme (pdf 1 Mb).

To date, almost all of the Italian local health units participate in Ccm activities, as do about 500 of the roughly 770 hospitals. The project involves several thousands health professionals, while at least 5000 general practitioners have participated in dedicated training sessions. Also, several hundreds medical specialists contribute to Ccm activities, both by participating in the numerous national working groups and by supporting regional activities.

The collegial bodies of Ccm and its position

Ccm is attached to the General Directorate for health prevention of the Ministry of health, whose offices guarantee operational support as regards project implementation. The operational Directorate of Ccm drafts an annual activity plan, formulates proposals for programme implementation projects, supports the committees and sub-committees also in checking the projects‘ implementation and results. The general health prevention Manager is also the operational Director of Ccm and remains in office until the end of the Ccm term.

Ccm is, in part, a collegial entity consisting of the following committees:

With a view to start a simplification process of some procedures, including the approval of projects, and in agreement with the Regional Governments, the Ministerial Decree of 18 September 2008 (pdf 51 kb) abolished the technical Committee. The decree, however, stipulates a set of working and discussion methods with regional representatives and formalizes the practice, actually already consolidated, of consulting with the entities identified by the Regional Presidents‘ Conference, including the interregional prevention Coordination bureau.

Indeed the Ccm implements its projects together with Regional Governments after consulting with the entities identified by the Regional Presidents‘ Conference, such as inter-regional coordination offices.

View the composition of the Committees for the 2004-2008 period (pdf 55 kb).

Boosting the country‘s ability to detect, prevent and control the main problems and potential threats for public heath, as part of the health System governed by the Regions, is the mission of Ccm. This is the goal of Ccm‘s activities: analysing health hazards, checking surveillance plans and active prevention with the Regions, support to national alert and rapid response systems, drafting programmes, also for management experimentation purposes, aimed at primary, secondary and tertiary prevention, promotion of assessment programmes for health performance and promotion of refresher and training courses for the staff.

In order to improve the results of its work and to pursue greater efficiency, Ccm follows these principles:

  • cooperation with the various components of the Ministry of health, getting the various sectors and institutions to work with the other Ministries and with the regional governments
  • health-sanitary integration
  • following the national health Plan, the health Contract with the Regions and the Government‘s health plan
  • being consistent with the existing work of Regional Governments: no new tasks, but rather activities geared towards rationalising, reorganising and reclaiming what it already being done, making sure that the activities of Ccm are in line with regional institutional tasks and local health management methods
  • assessing the process and the result, by introducing design standards and evaluation criteria, as part of an active collaboration relationship between Ccm and the partners with which it has agreements, both in the design and monitoring phase of programmes and projects.

Useful references

Ultimo aggiornamento: 
26 luglio 2010