Informal Consultation on Public Health Emergency Planning
15 to 16 March 2012 - Manila, Philippines
The Asia Pacific region has been prone to public health security threats, especially those caused by emerging diseases including pandemic influenza. To confront the challenges, the newly updated Asia Pacific Strategy for Emerging Diseases or APSED (2010) was endorsed at the sixty-first session of the WHO Regional Committee for the Western Pacific in October 2010. APSED (2010) aims to build sustainable national and regional capacities and partnerships to ensure public health security in Asia Pacific.
A new focus area, public health emergency preparedness, has now been included in APSED (2010) building on the lessons learnt from the preparedness for and response to pandemic influenza and other emerging diseases. The new strategy recommends a two-tiered approach (i.e. emergency planning and improving readiness) for public health emergency preparedness.
To ensure effective implementation, a five-year APSED (2010) workplan, developed and agreed by the First Meeting of the Asia Pacific Technical Advisory Group on the Asia Pacific Strategy for Emerging Diseases in July 2011, recommends the review of the experience and lessons learnt from pandemic influenza, emerging disease and other public health emergency preparedness and response and the identification of common elements in their planning. This informal consultation will address the need for preparedness planning for public health emergencies and other public health events.
The objectives of the consultation are:
- to review the experiences and lessons learnt from pandemic influenza, emerging diseases and other public health emergency preparedness and response events;
- to identify generic elements or components of pandemic influenza, emerging diseases and other public health emergency preparedness events; and
- to agree upon the steps for moving from pandemic preparedness towards generic public health emergency planning in the Western Pacific Region.