Agenda items to be discussed in health ministers’ meeting : protecting health facilities from emergencies : developing safer healthcare facilities.
AbstractAs the World Health Day 2009 theme and the Global Campaign of the UN International Strategy for Disaster Reduction are on the same topic of keeping health facilities safe in emergencies; the need for further discussions can help take this public health issue forward. This is in line with the vulnerability of the Region to various natural and human- generated emergencies. Considering that health facilities and their safety from hazards require looking at three main factors: structural, non-structural and functional, it requires several disciplines to be involved. Addressing the issue also involves specific challenges to be tackled such as: multisectoral engagement; community involvement; political will; integration of risk-reduction measures into development projects; and increasing awareness, among others. Global, regional and country efforts have produced positive results and these need to be taken to the next level in terms of coverage, type of facilities, methodologies to be applied and strategies to be adopted. Being one of the main benchmarks of the SEAR Region for emergency preparedness and response, Member states have taken this issue forward. The Regional Consultation on Keeping Health Facilities Safe from Disasters, held last in April 2008, outlined several recommendations and countries have taken steps in moving in the recommended direction. This paper outlines these matters and is presented for discussion by the High-level Preparatory (HLP) meeting.
World Health Organization, Regional Office for South-East Asia. (2009). Agenda items to be discussed in health ministers’ meeting : protecting health facilities from emergencies : developing safer healthcare facilities.. New Delhi: WHO Regional Office for South-East Asia.. http://www.who.int/iris/handle/10665/127762
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