The COVID-19 + Endemic Strategy

The COVID-19 + Endemic Strategy defines the objectives and the key actions for dealing with SARS-CoV-2 and other respiratory viruses in the longer term. The strategy is intended to help reduce the burden of disease in the population and prevent the healthcare system from being overwhelmed.

Why the need for an endemic disease strategy?

The SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus continues to circulate among the population. And, while the virus no longer poses the same challenge to public health that it did during the COVID-19 pandemic, further waves of infection which could also result in severe cases and deaths cannot be ruled out.
Such developments could put substantial pressures on the healthcare system, particularly in times when further respiratory viruses such as influenza or the respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) are circulating and may cause their own waves of infection. It is to cope with such eventualities that the FOPH has – in consultation with the relevant external parties – devised its COVID-19 + Endemic Strategy, which was formally approved by the Head of the Federal Department of Home Affairs (FDHA) in autumn 2023.

The aim of the strategy is to reduce the impact of SARS-CoV-2 and other respiratory viruses on the population in health terms, with a particular emphasis on persons at especially high risk. The strategy thus also helps to prevent any overburdening of the healthcare system.

Three action areas with key measures

The strategy specifies key measures in three complementary action areas. These measures are focused on SARS-CoV-2, but are also extended to other respiratory viruses wherever meaningful and feasible.

The action area of ‘Monitoring’ permits an ongoing assessment to be made of the epidemiological situation with regard to SARS-CoV-2 and other respiratory viruses. Such monitoring is achieved by drawing data from various monitoring systems such as the Sentinella GPs’ system, wastewater monitoring and the mandatory reporting system for infectious diseases. This ensures that any change to the epidemiological situation and any associated threat to public health are identified in good time.

The second action area of ‘Prevention’ is designed to provide information on vaccinations and access to the same, particularly for persons at especially high risk. It also envisages the provision of information on non-pharmaceutical means of avoiding infection, such as hand hygiene or the wearing of masks.

The third action area of ‘Infection control’ helps to prevent the spread of viral respiratory diseases to care and retirement homes. It also helps to generally strengthen infection control.

The implementation of the above measures involves numerous interfaces with other relevant strategies: the National Vaccination Strategy (NVS), the National Strategy for the Monitoring, Prevention and Control of Healthcare-Associated Infections (NOSO) and the Pandemic Plan.

Joint implementation

These measures are being implemented jointly by the Swiss Confederation, the cantons and further parties. In the event of new scientific findings or any major changes in the epidemiological situation, the COVID-19 + Endemic Strategy can be flexibly further developed and refined. The effectiveness of the strategy and the degree to which it has achieved its objectives should be determined through a corresponding evaluation by an outside party after three to five years.

Further information


The Confederation, together with the cantons and other stakeholders, has drawn up a national vaccination strategy (NVS) with the aim of guaranteeing that the population is sufficiently protected from vaccine-preventable diseases.

NOSO Strategy: reduce Hospital and nursing home infections

With the NOSO Strategy, the Confederation and its implementation partners aim to better protect the population against hospital and nursing home infections. Here you can read about the measures that are implemented or planned.

Swiss Influenza Pandemic Plan

The Swiss Influenza Pandemic Plan is the planning instrument used by the federal and cantonal authorities to prepare for a pandemic.


Information on COVID-19, the symptoms and the range of illness severity as well as the origin of the coronavirus.

Infectious diseases requiring notification – key facts

The reporting obligation is the key systemic element for the surveillance of communicable diseases in Switzerland.

Protect yourself and others

How can we protect ourselves and others against coronavirus infection? Find out here.

Last modification 04.12.2023

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Division Communicable diseases
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