The composition of NEHK 98 is based on epidemiological data, population profiles, disease patterns and certain assumptions borne out by emergency experience. These assumptions are:
• The most peripheral level of the health care system will be staffed by health workers with only limited medical training, who will treat symptoms rather than diagnosed diseases using the basic units and who will refer to the next level those patients who need more specialized treatment;
• Half of the population is 0-14 years of age;
• The average number of patients presenting themselves with the more common symptoms or diseases can be predicted;
• Standardized schedules will be used to treat these symptoms or diseases;
• The rate of referral from the basic to the next level is 10%;
• The first referral level of health care is staffed by experienced nurses, midwives, medical assistants or medical doctors, with no or very limited facilities for inpatient care. They will use the supplementary unit in conjunction with one or more basic units;
• If both the basic and first referral health care facilities are within reasonable reach of the target population, every individual will, on average, visit such facilities four times per year for advice or treatment. As a consequence the supplies in the kit, which are sufficient for approximately 10,000 outpatient consultations, will serve a population of 10,000 people for a period of approximately 3 months.