2018 AGES Annual Report

Changed on: 31.01.2020

Focus on digitisation

Computer-aided data analyses by AGES provide the basis for automated
control systems, for image recognition programmes such as the Austrian breast cancer screening programme, for sampling plans in zoonosis monitoring and food control or for the prophylaxis of the spread of animal diseases. Since its foundation, AGES has been using digital support in its core tasks in the areas of food safety, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, animal health, public health, radiation protection and food security.

Focus on climate

AGES has been carrying out heat mortality monitoring since 2018: With this system it is possible to model in real time whether heat waves cause more deaths in the population. In this case, authorities can inform nursing facilities, hospitals, health resorts, kindergartens, mobile nursing services, doctors or emergency organisations about an increased need for care.

Climate change favours the settlement of formerly "exotic" ticks and mosquitoes or leads to an expansion of their settlement areas. The AGES tick website, established in 2018, makes an important contribution to public health, as tick-borne diseases will gain in importance in the future.

Focus on African Swine Fever

The detection of African Swine Fever in one state has a massive economic impact on the affected economic sector. In order to prevent the spread of this epidemic for as long as possible, the Federal Ministry of Labour, Social Affairs, Health and Consumer Protection (BMASGK) commissioned information to veterinarians, pig farmers, hunters and travellers.

Knowledge open and transparent

AGES analysts examined more than 645,000 samples in 2018. The data obtained formed the basis for more than 42,000 expert opinions and risk assessments on a wide variety of tasks, such as the recurrence of brucellosis, the monitoring of drinking water and bathing waters, the investigation of pollutants in palm oil, the analysis of illegal drugs from the Internet or the analytical classification of food-borne outbreaks. Results of 60 key actions from the official food control were published online based on AGES knowledge. In 2018, 17,000 subscribers used the AGES Product Warnings and Product Recalls service, which AGES uses to provide information on recalls of food and children's toys, pharmaceuticals and medical devices as well as products subject to the Product Safety Act 2004. In addition, more than 20,000 users used the free app.

Applied research for the benefit of consumers, industry and authorities is an essential task of AGES. In 2018, a total of 28 research projects were completed at AGES. 83 research projects were in progress. As part of the Austrian EU Council Presidency in the second half of 2018, AGES experts took part in numerous top-class meetings and events in the fields of public health, agriculture, food safety as well as drug and medical device safety.

Only available in German.