European Surveys and Trainings to Improve MSM Community Health project (ESTICOM)

Project Details


As part of the European Commission Health Programme 2014-2020, a pan-European project titled ESTICOM (European Surveys and Training to Improve MSM Community Health) has been funded by the Consumers, Health, Agriculture and Food Executive Agency (CHAFEA) of the European Commission. The project is running between September 2016 and August 2019, and comprises three elements:

1) A European online survey among MSM (European MSM Internet Survey - EMIS 2017) which aims to generate data useful for the planning of HIV and STI prevention and care programmes for MSM, and to monitor national progress in this area by comparing its results with those of previous surveys, such as EMIS 2010.

2) An online survey about knowledge, attitudes, practices, and training needs of community health workers (CHW) who provide counselling, testing, and psychosocial care and support services for MSM in the EU and neighbouring countries (the European Community Health Worker Online Survey - ECHOES). This is a survey that, in this form, has never been conducted before.

3) Development and pilot testing of a training programme for MSM-focused community health workers, intended to be adaptable for all EU countries. The training programme will contribute to improving the quality of prevention, counselling and early diagnosis services HIV, STIs and viral hepatitis among MSM.

In this project, the University of Brighton is responsible for developing the first ever European online survey of community health workers (CHW) who provide counselling, testing, and psychosocial care and support for MSM across EU countries. Led by Professor Nigel Sherriff with Professor Jorg Huber, Dr Nick McGlynn, Dr Alex Pollard, and Dr Carrie Llewellyn, WP6, will perform a number of tasks including (but not limited to):

• a scoping exercise examining any existing surveys (if available) used to address CHWs providing sexual health services for MSM including questionnaires focusing on outreach workers and community based VCT services for HIV/AIDS, STIs, and viral hepatitis
• development of a proposal for a European CHW Consensus questionnaire (D6.1) which will build on existing questionnaires (where available including EMIS) incorporating ECDC/EMCDDA indicators and comparable approaches by WHO and UNAIDS where relevant and/or appropriate
• two rounds of pre-testing of the online survey aligned with WP2 (using in English including observed completion and cognitive debriefing interviews
• creation of a final version of the European CHW Consensus questionnaire for approval by the Contracting Authority
• coordinated (with WP2) online translation via into relevant EU/EEA languages.

Both the EMIS and ECHOES surveys are now closed - we would like to sincerely thank all those who took part! Final reports on the results of the surveys will be released in 2019.

The ESTICOM Project is being delivered by a consortium involving 9 European organisations, led by the Robert Koch Institute in Berlin, Germany. The consortium is supported by a board of advisors and a network of associated partner organisations.
Effective start/end date1/09/1631/08/19




  • Community Health Worker
  • MSM
  • HIV
  • STI
  • Hepatitis
  • Community