Department of Epidemiology and Health Monitoring
In its responsibility for Federal Health Reporting, the Department sees its role both as a centre for information relevant to public health and as an initiator and player in the development of a nationwide health-monitoring system. In this function it represents a node in the European health-monitoring network and participates in the corresponding EU projects. Research areas include both epidemiological methods and the epidemiological evaluation of data on non-communicable diseases and their risks.
The tasks of the Department as a whole include the drafting, execution and evaluation of its own surveys, such as the Federal Health Survey and the National Health Interview and Examination Survey for Children and Adolescents (KiGGS). To perform these tasks, the department has a functionally organized structure of seven divisions, and collaborates closely with the RKI's Department of Infectious Disease Epidemiology.
The German Centre for Cancer Registry Data at the RKI was set up after the Federal Cancer Registry Data Act came into force in August 2009. This has created a structure for enabling both scientists and the interested public to use the data from the regional (state) population-based cancer registries even more intensively in future.
Division 21 (Epidemiological Data Centre, Biometry) administers, processes, checks and descriptively evaluates the data that is relevant to health reporting and the work of the Department. Another of the Division's main tasks is the continuous improvement of the statistical methods of data validation and data analysis that are employed.
Division 22 (Epidemiology of Non-Communicable Diseases, Environmental Medicine) is responsible for analyses on the burden of disease, health risks, prevention potential and healthcare needs in connection with chronic health problems. Among other issues, work and research currently focus on obesity, diabetes mellitus, multi- and co-morbidity, health and quality of life in old age, nutritional epidemiology, drug application, environmental medicine and accessing additional data sources for a comprehensive surveillance of chronic diseases.
The tasks of Division 23 (Health of Children and Adolescents, Concepts of Prevention) include collecting and evaluating data on the health of children and adolescents, developing additionally necessary surveys, and analysing available data with the aim of finding new approaches to prevention.
Division 24 (Health Interview Surveys and European Cooperation) coordinates Health Interview surveys performed within the framework of the Federal Health Monitoring System at the Robert Koch Institute and carries out the fieldwork. The division is responsible for the GEDA-study “Health in Germany Update” that regularly gathers interview data regarding the health status and health behavior of the population in Germany.
Division 25 (Health Examination Surveys and Cohort Studies) coordinates the health-related nationwide surveys carried out by Department 2 to expand the data pool for Federal Health Reporting and the Department's population-based research, and to put them on a stable, permanent footing. In addition to regularly conducted interview and examination surveys of the adult population, one of the Division's key tasks is to continue the National Health Interview and Examination Survey for Children and Adolescents (KiGGS) as KiGGS cohorts.
Division 26 (Central Epidemiological Laboratory) analyses measured parameters in the fields of clinical chemistry, haematology, immunology and infectious-disease epidemiology collected in the context of the RKI's monitoring of the health of children and adults in Germany. All tests are subject to extensive internal and external quality controls.
Division 27 is responsible for Federal Health Reporting. This includes editing and publishing health reports, drafting and updating the range of issues covered by health reporting, continuously improving the methodological basis of health reporting (indicator systems, the economic cost of diseases, adapting internationally accepted parameters, etc.), and the networking of Federal Health Reporting with comparable reporting systems at the Länder (federal state) and EU level.