Surveillance is an important component of influenza control. This report describes the establishment and first results of the Korean Influenza Surveillance Scheme (KISS), an integrated clinical and laboratory surveillance network involving 622 public health centres (PHCs) and private clinics. Sentinel physicians reported cases of influenza-like illness (ILI) weekly and forwarded specimens for virus isolation and characterization. Influenza activity during the opening 2000-2001 season was milder and delayed compared with previous years. The ILI consultation rate corresponded well with the number of influenza virus isolates, both peaking in week 10 of 2001. Influenza A(H3N2) was the dominant isolate. The peak ILI consultation rate was higher in private clinics than in PHCs (5-04 vs 1 center dot 79 cases/1000 visits). An evaluation questionnaire generated potential enhancements to the scheme. KISS appears to represent the pattern of influenza activity accurately and will have a valuable role in monitoring and preventing epidemics in Korea.