OBJECTIVES: to describe the integrated surveillance system of COVID-19 in Italy, to illustrate the outputs used to return epidemiological information on the spread of the epidemic to the competent public health bodies and to the Italian population, and to describe how the surveillance data contributes to the ongoing weekly regional monitoring and risk assessment system .
METHODS: the COVID-19 integrated surveillance system is the result of a close and continuous collaboration between the Italian National Institute of Health (ISS), the Italian Ministry of Health, and the regional and local health authorities . Through a web platform, it collects individual data of laboratory confirmed cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection and gathers information on their residence, laboratory diagnosis, hospitalisation, clinical status, risk factors, and outcome . Results, for different levels of aggregation and risk categories, are published daily and weekly on the ISS website, and made available to national and regional public health authorities; these results contribute one of the information sources of the regional monitoring and risk assessment system .
RESULTS: the COVID-19 integrated surveillance system monitors the space-time distribution of cases and their characteristics . Indicators used in the weekly regional monitoring and risk assessment system include process indicators on completeness and results indicators on weekly trends of newly diagnosed cases per Region .
CONCLUSIONS: the outputs of the integrated surveillance system for COVID-19 provide timely information to health authorities and to the general population on the evolution of the epidemic in Italy . They also contribute to the continuous re-assessment of risk related to transmission and impact of the epidemic thus contributing to the management of COVID-19 in Italy.