The BCRT – Berlin Centre for Travel and Tropical Medicine – is integrated into international networks. The aim of these networks is to exchange infectious and tropical medicine data and information and thus to keep our own work scientifically up to date.
In February 1999, we founded a European network: the “European Network on Imported Infectious Disease Surveillance (TropNetEurop)”. The initiative serves to record and research infectious diseases imported into Europe. In terms of content, the emphasis of the network is on an association of clinical centres with a focus on infectiology and tropical medicine. This ensures direct patient contact, which both improves the quality of detailed data collection and opens up potential opportunities for conducting clinical studies. Specialised infectious disease centres have considerable potential for early detection of new trends in imported infections with potential regional, national or global significance. An anonymised and standardised collection of patient data is carried out by each partner of TropNetEurop. This is the first cooperation on a European level. Beyond the epidemiological aspect, the Europe-wide association of infectious disease centres opens up the possibility of setting up and coordinating multi-centre research projects with comparatively little effort.
In cooperation with the Robert Koch Institute, we established SIMPID in 2001, a network for sentinel surveillance of imported infections. The network unites doctors working in travel medicine in Germany in a network. The main goals are to record imported infections, to establish an effective clinical and epidemiological information system within the network, and to create access to a large patient population for conducting clinical studies. The sentinel system does not attempt to carry out a complete registration of all imported infections in Germany, but aims at high data quality and rapid information transfer. Comprehensive feedback to all participating physicians is one of the main criteria of the network.
The BCRT is a member of the International Association for Medical Assistance to Travellers.
The International Association for the Advancement of Medical Care in Travellers (IAMAT) is a worldwide network of doctors who offer travellers standardised medical services at a high professional level. Membership is granted only after extensive vetting. The BCRT represents IAMAT in Germany.