The Engagement of Cittadinanzattiva on Vaccination

Cittadinanzattiva has a more than 30 year experience in the protection of citizens' rights in the health sector, which initiated with its Tribunale per i diritti del malato ("Tribunal for Patients' Rights" or TDM) in 1980 and was later strengthened through the Coordinamento nazionale Associazioni Malati Cronici (National Coordination Centre of Chronic Patients' Associations) in 1996.

Over the last 20 years, it has been increasing its contributions for the promotion and protection of citizens' rights in the fields of vaccination:

Protection against violations of the right of individual citizens, through its free-of-charge counselling, information and support service provided by 300 TDM offices located nationwide.

  • Collection and dissemination of best practiceswith many editions of national prizes on humanization.
  • Promotion of information and awareness raising campaignsfor the citizens.
  • Actions designed to promote cultural changes, though panels organised with health workers, health corporations, institutional representatives; position paper on vaccination policies, guide etc.
  • Institutional mediation, aimed at strengthening the protection of rights
  • Production of citizens' information, i.e. information directly produced by citizens, "based on their point of view, starting from the data directly or indirectly acquired and meant for changing the current state of affairs with a view to effectively improving the protection of citizens' rights and achieving conditions for effective protection" by means of follow-ups, enquiries and citizens' audits.

Each year in Italy we collect an average of 25,000 among complaints and requests of information from patients and citizens. And each year we present different Annual Reports to the Ministry of Health and relevant healthcare stakeholders, providing them a civic point of view about the daily relationship between the National Health System and Italian citizens and describing the state of the art of the access to health services in the different Italian regions also about, of course, vaccination services, coverage etc.

Some of the main examples:

Observatory on Federalism in Health Report 2011- 201220132015 - 2016- 2017

PIT Salute Report: XVIIIediton  XXedition

Annual Report on Pharmacies 2018

Our commitment has been appreciated by the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), the Agency of the European Union aimed at strengthening Europe's defense against infectious diseases that, in 2016,  has decided to officially include Cittadinanzattiva in the ECDC Technical Advisory Group dealing with vaccine coverage. And as members of this Advisory Group we feel a great responsibility in continuing to commit ourselves to this issue: we believe that a widespread vaccination culture is necessary, particularly to overcome the idea that we only get vaccinated when we are young and, instead, to shift to (a common knowledge linked to) a life-course vaccination approach which prevents a series of diseases even during adulthood.

A few of last Cittadinanzattiva's promoted and implemented initiatives at national level

2018 #Rompilatrasmissione (breack the broadcasting): information campaign on vaccination in Italy 
Cittadinanzattiva-Tribunal for patients’ rights has promoted #rompilatrasmissione, an information campaign designed to illustrate citizens the benefits of prophylaxis. With our campaign we want to inform citizens about the existence of vaccines to protect themselves at any age; to report when and for how long they are free, to favor a widespread vaccination culture, which overcomes the obligation and makes the choices of protection through vaccines an aware choice, through correct, scientific and evidence-based information in a more friendly environment of organizations that deliver vaccines across Italy.
Read more,  download the guide (IT), see some examples of the social campaign

2018 Vaccination training tour Cittadinanzattiva -Tribunal for patients’ rights realized, in several Italian cities,  training seminars opened to their  volunteers to provide correct information on the rights and duties in the vaccination field; give concrete answers to citizens' questions, implementing more direct communication and information initiatives; safeguards and monitors the application of the rules. Read more (IT)



November 16th 2018 "Open day"  On November 16th 2018 took place an "Open day" in 37 cities of Italian 11 regions: Cittadinanzattiva- Tribunal for Patients’ Rights local offices open to give information on vaccines and help citizens to face any critical issues in this area. Activists and experts met citizens to promote proximity information, distributing useful material and collecting reports in order to offer tools and support to protect themselves. Read more


2019: In the Jury panel of the contest #PerchéSì. Read more

Training initiatives on vaccines for advocacy groups
A series of training initiatives titled “Vaccinations; rights and duties today: learn to teach and to promote empowerment” was launched by Cittadinanzattiva on the 22nd of October 2019. The first initiative took place in Rome the same day with the local chapter of the Association of Medical and Dental Doctors. The goal of the initiative is to improve the understanding of vaccination among constituencies and activists. There will be two more dates of the training tour in other Italian cities. If you want to know more, click here. (IT language)

Information Campaign about Influenza Vaccination launched
On the 23rd of October 2019, Cittadinanzattiva launched in Italy the second edition of its campaign on vaccination called #Rompilatrasmissione. This year it will focus on flu vaccination. To know more and to download the guide for citizens, click here (IT language)

A few of last Active Citizenship Network's promoted and implemented initiatives at European level

28 February 2018  “The challenges of life-course vaccination to enhance public health protection in Europe: a multi-stakeholder approach” In line with its multi annual commitment on the topic, Active Citizenship Network with this initiative intended to demonstrate what citizens and advocacy groups, in partnership with stakeholders can offer in terms of raise awareness about the phenomenon, enhance the body of knowledge of positive cases and success, and strengthen commitment to this topic. The event was realized in the European Parliament and it has been be hosted by the MEP David Borrelli in the framework of the MEPs Interest Group “European Patients’ Rights & Cross-Border Healthcare”. Read more


6th November 2018 European active citizens advocate for vaccination – EU training seminar ACN organized an European training seminar on the theme of life-course vaccination opened to at 20 selected leaders of civic and patients associations coming from different countries (Belgium, Bulgaria, Hungary, Italy, Ireland, Spain, Slovenia, Slovakia, Albania, Kosovo, Croatia, Malta...). The reason was to responds to the need to be more up-to-date and prepared in the face of a phenomenon (the decrease in vaccination coverage) that has returned to topical relevance; to better identify, recognize and struggle the increased external factors that can negatively influence the vaccine policy in EU Member States and have updated information & knowing how to recognize official sources of information. To know more about the initiative click here


7th November 2018 European active citizens advocate for vaccination – Public event at EU Parliament The event organized the 7th of November 2018 by Active Citizenship Network at the EU Parliament was aimed to build a close collaboration and dialogue with European institutions and stakeholders across the health care spectrum to determine how we can work together to a more effective civic society engagement in vaccination policies. The event hosted a  well-attended panel discussion that brought together MEPs, the Deputy Director General DG SANTE, the leader of the Joint Action on Vaccination, experts and of course representative of civic society very active on the theme of vaccination. A strong engagement by all stakeholders to tackle issue of low vaccination coverage and equity in access to vaccination has been called.  Read more

Martin Seychell, Deputy Director-General for Health and Food Safety, with Mariano Votta, Director Active Citizenship Network and Suzanne Wait, The Health Policy Partnership

European Joint Action on Vaccination - On December 14th 2018 Active Citizenship Network and INSERM, the coordinator of the EU-JAV, signed a MoU which recognized ACN as official stakeholder and collaborating partner to the EU-JAV. In particular, ACN is interested in the activities linked with the Work Packages N°2 (Dissemination of the Project), N°4 (Integration in National Policies and Sustainability) and N°8 (Vaccine hesitancy and uptake. From research and practices to implementation). To download our short summary of the EU-JAV 2019 General Assembly Meeting, click here

ACN took part at the EU-JAV on-line General Assembly 2020 the 30th of September and the 1st of October. This meeting provided the opportunity, through plenary sessions, to have a precise view of the EU-JAV achievements, ongoing projects, and planned actions; it allowed interactions between the participants and the EU-JAV team thought Q&A session and informal discussions.


“Coalition on Vaccination”
The Coalition is based on the 2018 EU Council Recommendation on strengthened cooperation against vaccine-preventable diseases, and ACN was invited by the EU Commission to join the initiative together with associations of healthcare professionals and other relevant stakeholder to address myths about vaccination and exchange best practices. To download our short summary of the 2nd meeting, click here
In particular, Active Citizenship Network has been appointed as a correspondent by the EU Commission.
The 1st meeting, titled “Towards a Coalition on Vaccination” was realized last March 4th 2019, while the 2nd meeting last 11th September 2019, both in Bruxelles.

European active citizens for vaccination - 2019”: pan-EU project on vaccination led by ACN
Active Citizenship Network launched in April during the 2019 European immunization week a new initiative at the European level called “European active citizens for vaccination - 2019”. Thanks to this project  ACN realized a Video for a social media communication campaign: a short spot with flash interviews with ordinary citizens who talk about the topic of vaccines, providing positive data taken from official sources. Five different versions of the spot has been created with subtitles in Italian, Spanish, Hungarian, Polish and English. Moreover it has been realized 3 national focus group on the specific theme of “the life-course immunization approach in the national immunization plan” to find together proposals and gather impressions, suggestions, advices on that aspect. Here all the reports. To know more about this new initiative, click here.

Young Coalition for Prevention & Vaccination
In 2018-2020 Active Citizenship Network was involved in this initiative led by ThinkYoung whit the aim to draft a manifesto by 2020 with concrete proposals for increasing awareness and uptake of vaccinations.
The Young Coalition for Prevention & Vaccination (YC4PV) brings together student organizations, health policy activists, patient associations, and the medical and pharmaceutical sectors. To know more about this initiative, click here. The YC4PV created a Manifesto capturing 10 recommendations for actions in the field of immunization to present to the newly elected MEPs and Commissioners. To download the Manifesto officially launched on 21st January 2020 at the EU Parliament, click here

Joined for Vaccination: Addressing Vaccine Hesitancy and Vaccination uptake in EU. A Multi Stakeholder Perspective
On the 28th of February 2020 Active Citizenship Network carried out an event at the European Parliament in the framework of the Launch of the second term of the MEP Interest Group European Patients' Rights and Cross-Border Healthcare. The aim of the initiative was to bring together stakeholders to tackle vaccination on EU level. It was hosted by Brando Benifei, co-chair of the Interest Group. To know more about this initiative, click here

#COVID19 & its impact on the vaccination plan
National level: The Italian Federation of General Practitioners-FIMMG (Italian Federation of General Practitioners) and my organization Cittadinanzattiva have written to the Government and Regions for setting up the flu and pneumococcal vaccination campaign that starts early, in October, and that provides for the lowering of the free administration to 55 years. Indications involving the need for additional supplies of flu shots. Articles: ABCDEFGH, etc. (IT). Video interviews to the Secretary-General of Cittadinanzattiva: IL, The proposal is now supported within the Parliament where the debate is opened (M).

National level: Civic monitoring on prevention: focus on screening & vaccination centres across Italy: the please find press release and suitable articles: ABCD, etc. (IT). The research has been hosted by the video of  the Italian Federation of Pediatricias (FIMP) and published at the EU Level also by HEALTH EUROPA QUARTERLY (Issue 13 - 2020): "For vaccination? Come back .... I can't tell you when"

EU level: In occasion of the  online celebration of the European Patients Rights Day (18 April 2020), a dedicated newsletter with some messages focused on the value of vaccination in the era of COVID-19. To know more, click here.

Open consultation on cancer plan
Cittadinanzattiva- Active Citizenship Network provided its contribution to the public consultation on the EU beating cancer plan, for which the roadmap include prevention and vaccination, launched by the EU Commission last February.   

World Meningitis Day 2020
Our contribution to support the social media campaign promoted by our Spanish partner “Asociación Española contra la Meningitis

Coalition for vaccination: Citizens organizations officially involved – March 2020
Last 9th March 2020 in the Annual meeting of the Coalition for vaccination in Brussels, the Commission and the Coalition members decided that the non-healthcare professionals’ associations can be associated organisations to the Coalition. Then, Active Citizenship Network has been included as you can find here. Last 19 of May we had a fruitful call with the 3-leading organization (EFN-PGEU-CPME): The Coalition is focused only on awareness initiatives, our idea is to increase cooperation with them on vaccination also outside the Coalition.   
Public event at the EU Parliament – January 2020
In occasion of the official launch for the 2019-2024 term, of the MEPs Interest Group “European Patients' Rights & Cross-Border Healthcare”, it was realized last 28th of January 2020 the event titled “Joined For Vaccination: addressing Vaccine Hesitancy and Increasing Uptake in EU. A Multi-Stakeholder Perspective”. More info here.

EU project supported by public funds
H2020 project: Our involvement in the Advisory Board for a project proposal linked to the topic: “H2020 SC1-BHC-33-2020: Addressing low vaccine uptake

2021 - Survey on the first period of the COVID-19 Vaccine campaign across Europe
With the contribution of an expert committee - and taking into consideration the EU Commission’s 
key steps for effective vaccination strategies and vaccines deployment - the online questionnaires promoted by Active Citizenship Network aims to explore what has been done and what should be done in the national immunization plans across Europe. It is realized in the framework of the EU project “Protecting the value of vaccination during -and after-the COVID-19 pandemic across Europe: impact, experiences and perspectives from citizens’ and patients’ advocacy groups & relevant stakeholdersand it is addressed to PAGs (Patients Advocacy Groups), citizens’ organizations, national and international healthcare experts, representatives of national institutions dealing with vaccination. To fill the online qualitative survey, click here.


Cittadinanzattiva-Active Citizenship Network: documents on the topic 


Published articles:


Agreements to reinforce our policy on vaccination at the European and global level

Over the years, Active Citizenship Network signed Memorandums of Understanding with the following organizations:

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Coalition for Life-Course Immunisation (CLCI) is a diverse network of expert individuals and associations representing public health, patients, academics and health professionals from across Europe. CLCI is committed to preventing infectious disease over the life-course by highlighting the benefits of wide-scale immunisation. Vaccines are not just for children: Active Citizenship Network and CLCI believe that vaccines are an important part of daily life at all ages and stages.

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The International Federation on Ageing (IFA)
is an international non-governmental organization with a membership base comprising government, NGOs, academics, industry, and individuals in 80 countries. The IFA began operations in 1973, at a time when the social and economic impact of population ageing was only beginning to be understood by governments around the world. Active Citizenship Network and IFA agreed to cooperate in order to better protect progress of vaccination throughout life.

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Excellence in Pediatrics Institute (EIPI)
, an association that provides continuing medical education to a global network of over 45,000 child health care professionals. EIPI's purpose is to act as a hub for sharing the latest developments and advice with all stakeholders involved in the care of children and adolescents. The agreement with ACN is also focused on developing a common initiative on vaccination in pediatrician age.


Cittadinanzattiva-Active Citizenship Network participation as stakeholder or panelist in public events on the topic

Exploring the needs and future developments of immunisation records in the EU - Better vaccine policies through coherent evidence  - European Health Forum of Gastein 2017

EU-Russia Civil Society Forum April 2018

FEAM Forum workshop on Vaccination - 19 November 2018, Brussels

EU Ecosystem For Monitoring Of Post-Licensure Vaccine Benefit And Risk: From ADVANCE To Vac4EU” conference, organized in Brussels, Belgium on 6th March 2019

Annual Forum of IMI project DRIVE”, organized last 17th and 18th of July, Helsinki (Finland) at the National Institute for Health and Welfare. The DRIVE project (Development of Robust and Innovative Vaccine Effectiveness) was established in 2017 under Innovative Medicines Initiative. DRIVE is developing a European platform for studying brand-specific influenza vaccine effectiveness.

Global Summit on Vaccination” organised by The European Commission in cooperation with the World Health Organisation on 12 September 2019, in Brussels.

Vaccine ecosystem health check. Identifying the components and experiencing the complexities”, organized on 3 October 2019 in the framework of the European Health Forum Gastein (EHFG).

Vaccines Medical Education Meeting: Changing the European landscape in influenza vaccination” organized on 4-5 November 2019 at the Institut Pasteur in Paris to discuss with other experts and stakeholders on how to tackle the influenza challenge together.

IMI Project Drive Annual Forum 2020: Webinars on September 22- 24, 2020 an opportunity to engage with DRIVE associate partners, research collaborators and external stakeholders. DRIVE consortium is currently formed by 15 members and its research network involves 10 different European countries.

14th Vaccine Congress Online Edition 2020: The focus was on combatting the threat of Covid-19, with leading experts in vaccinology sharing their knowledge on the current developments and challenges we face.

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January 2021: “Prevention and Vaccines in the COVID-19 era: Bold choices for financing immunisation systems”.
The Director of ACN was invited to the event by MSD providing a loud voice for citizens across Europe who overwhelmingly seek to be protected from preventable diseases. The webinar was attended of almost 90 experts, healthcare professionals, EU and Member State level policymakers and patient groups. The report “Sustainable Immunization Financing in Europe”, presented during the event, is available at this link and its accompanying policy brief can be accessed here. You can find the event recording here.

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January 2021 -“Vaccination Advocacy Toolkit Advisory Group Meeting”
To inform the development of the
Vaccination Advocacy Toolkit (VAT), it is critical to gain a deeper understanding of advocacy toolkits that are acknowledged as good practice. With findings from the analysis of five advocacy toolkits with varying objectives, elements, and formats, the International Federation on Ageing last January 2021 involved Active Citizenship Network among other stakeholders to inform an international group discussion and determination on the elements necessary in the VAT to influence and stimulate vaccination policies and practice in the most at-risk populations.

January 2021 -“Changing the Conversation on Adult Vaccination: Good Practice in Multisectoral Engagement”
Active Citizenship Network was invited last January 2021 by the International Federation on Ageing to the EU event detailing elements of good practice in the pursuit of improved adult vaccination. The IFA's webinar allowed to explore multisectoral action, its purpose and importance in helping to influence and shape policy and tangible actions directed to at-risk populations. To know more click
here, and to see a video introduction, click here.

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February 2021 - Coalition for Vaccination Manifesto
As part of the Coalition, Active Citizenship Network has been involved in defining the content of the Manifesto published on 9 February 2021 by the
Coalition for Vaccination to encourage healthcare professionals to get vaccinated against COVID-19. To download the Manifesto, click here.

February 2021 - Call to Action on Routine and Life-course immunisation
Active Citizenship Network endorsed the Call to Action on Routine and Life-course immunisation drafted by Vaccine Europe. With the COVID-19 vaccine rollout throughout Europe and the world, we've reached a key milestone in the fight against the pandemic. Nevertheless, routine vaccinations remain an essential part of protecting people's health, and it's hugely important to continue with them. To emphasize this message, the Routine Life-course Immunisation campaign has been launched last 11 February 2021, with a Call to Action to governments and global, European and national stakeholders. Click for the gift
( 1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 ). To download the document, click here.

April 2021 - #VaccineChamp campaign
Active Citizenship Network
supported the social media campaign launched on 12 April 2021 as part of this year's European Health Parliament. The campaign, #VaccineChamp, is a youth initiative from Europe, aiming to equip citizens and people living in Europe with trustworthy information on vaccination. You can find the campaign website online here. This project aims to #ShareTheScience, providing easy access in a one-stop shop manner to reliable information on vaccination and COVID-19 vaccines in particular. By doing so, all we hope is to help tackle mis- and dis-information online surrounding vaccination.

June 2021 - YC4PV Online Campaign Toolkit
Active Citizenship Network supported the
Young Coalition for Prevention and Vaccination (YC4PV) Online Campaign Toolkit. The initiative has been launched in June 2021 with the goal to help younger generations engage in online conversations about immunization. To download the toolkit, click here.

June 2021 - “Vaccine hesitancy and uptake. From research and practices to implementation”: EU survey
As a stakeholder of the
EU-Jav, Active Citizenship Network has contributed to the EU Joint Action on Vaccination survey “Vaccine hesitancy and uptake. From research and practices to implementation”, published on June 2021 after being submitted to the European Commission. Click here to download the document rich of good practices and lessons learned identified through the data gathering.

June 2021 - “Immunisation for All Ages (IFAA)”: Advocacy Roundtable Meetings
The Immunisation for All Ages (IFAA) initiative, supported by
International Longevity Centre UK, is working to combat inequity and improve access to immunisation to help promote health throughout life, to preserve function and to help prevent death and disability.

Active Citizenship Network has been invited on June 2021 as a discussant in the roundtable meeting “Protecting and Progressing Routine Immunisation” promoted by IFAA to explore how routine immunisation can be protected in greater depth. In that context, the IFAA’s Manifesto was updated in order to outline the group’s ambitions and calls to action to promote immunisation throughout the life course. To know more, click here, to download the Manifesto, click here.

June 2021 - “The Economist Intelligence Unit's Responsiveness Project”: Advisory Panel Meeting
The Economist Intelligence Unit has invited the Director of Active Citizenship Network to join the “Covid-19 Responsiveness” project as part of the Advisory Panel. The Advisory Panel is composed of experts with diverse insights and perspectives and the first Advisory Council meeting was held on Friday, 25 June 2021.

The purpose of the overall project is to identify possible factors contributing to success in handling Covid-19 across a range of countries so that valuable knowledge can be shared and lessons can be learned. The ultimate goal is to develop a framework of evidence-based policy takeaways. To know more, please click here and contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

June 2021 - “Value-based Vaccination: What Is the Cost of Non-vaccination for Public Health?”
Value-Based Healthcare (VBHC) offers a new value(s)-based immunization approach for sustainable and resilient healthcare systems. Exploring the full value of vaccinations could allow a better evaluation of their health-related and care-related productivity gains, community externalities and impact on social responsibility and cohesion.

Last 30 of June 2021, the President of Cittadinanzattiva took part as panelist to the international webinar organized by the World Federation of Public Health Associations.

The initiative brought together experts from different fields to showcase the value-based decision-making in vaccination by addressing the evidence needed to demonstrate the full value of vaccination. Furthermore, the event outlined steps along the decision-making pathway to ensure a value-based vaccination is recognized when designing and implementing policies at the supranational, regional, and national levels.

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July 2021 - ACN joins the Steering Group on Influenza Vaccination, to better foster among citizens the annual EU Flu Day in October
With the intense focus currently being placed on the pandemic, it will be crucial to keep ensuring that other infectious diseases like influenza remain a key public health priority. Influenza will continue to place a considerable (while preventable) burden on people's health and the health systems across Europe as experienced every year. As EU Member States’ COVID-19 vaccination programmes get closer to completion, and as Europe begins to re-open, the risk of high influenza infection rates also re-emerges.

For this reason, Active Citizenship Network well accepted the invitation to join in July 2021 the Steering Group on Influenza Vaccination, a coalition of organisations active on influenza vaccination since years with the objective to promote an increased uptake of influenza vaccination across Europe. Special initiatives will be organized to support the EU Flu Day (to know more about the 2020 edition, click here).

The Group brought together policymakers, patient group representatives, clinicians, and industry representatives such as ECPMWaididESWI, LSHTM - VaccineConfidenceProjectEFAESNOEFPCPGEU.

October 2021 – On October 26th ACN took part in an event on “The impact of COVID-19 on routine vaccination”, organized by the FEAM European Biomedical Policy Forum, during which experts from European authorities and stakeholders provided an overview on the impact that COVID-19 had on routine vaccination and on lessons learned from this pandemic, in order to improve planning and communication about vaccines across Europe.

Please find the PDF version of the agenda, here.

You can watch the video of the event, here.

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(last updated October 2021)

To know more write to Daniela Quaggia This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The activities carried out by ACN in 2019-2020 aiming at the promotion of vaccination policies in Europe and its advocacy work in the interest of the health and well-being of European citizens are realized thanks to the support of GSK, MSD,Pfizer and Sanofi.

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