LMU Klinikum
Center for International Health CIHLMU
CIHLMU is a center at LMU Klinikum

Outbreak Stewardship: Pandemic preparedness through epidemiologic off-the-shelf study protocols

Introduction to the Course:

Outbreak Stewardship comprises activities that enable effective and efficient control and prevention of infectious disease outbreaks on a local level. It targets both - structural aspects as well as training of health professionals and the public. Important aspects are, among others, adequate risk communication, preparedness, and awareness.

This course focuses on one method of preparing for emerging infectious diseases: epidemiologic off-the-shelf study protocols. The basic idea is to prepare a protocol for an epidemiologic study before the actual outbreak occurs. The advantage is that the preparation that needs to be done during the unusual outbreak situation is minimized and the response can be as timely as possible. Content, schedule and requirements

The course guides through the creation of an epidemiologic off-the-shelf study protocol. It starts with teaching the basics of infectious disease epidemiology and the steps in applying an off-the-shelf study protocol and continues with study protocol-related topics (study objective, study design, study population, study instruments, ethics and data management, and statistical analysis). The participant’s goal is to create a study protocol by the end of the course. Ideally, the participant chooses a topic that is realistic and relevant to her/his local setting to come up with a study protocol that can actually be used in future outbreak situations. Adequate English language skills are necessary. Although most relevant epidemiologic background knowledge is covered, some previous knowledge on epidemiologic concepts is useful because the course focuses on practical applications.

Learning objectives

At the end of the module, the participants will be able to:

  • Describe what an “off-the-shelf” study protocol is and why it is a useful tool in outbreak stewardship and outbreak preparedness
  • Understand the basics of infectious disease epidemiology
  • Describe essential parts of an epidemiologic study protocol
  • Create an “off-the-shelf” study protocol
  • Apply an “off-the-shelf” study protocol in an outbreak situation

Target group:

Health professionals (or students in health-related fields) who contribute to handling infectious disease outbreaks, e.g. by contributing to prevention and control of outbreaks or by doing research about outbreak-related aspects


E-learning without offline or face-2-face activities (via Moodle)




3 ECTS (90 hours)




Pilot phase