CCOUC Appointed Secretariat for WHO Thematic Platform for Health Emergency & Disaster Risk Management Research Group

CCOUC was appointed as Secretariat for the World Health Organization Thematic Platform for Health Emergency & Disaster Risk Management Research Group (WHO H-EDRM Research Group), which has been established following roundtable discussions amongst international experts hosted at CCOUC on 23 September 2016. Prof Emily Chan, Professor and Director of CCOUC, and Prof Virginia Murray, Consultant in Global Disaster Risk Reduction at Public Health England, assumed the co-chairpersonship of this group of experts from WHO and seven countries.

Health Emergency and Disaster Risk Management (H-EDRM) is a diverse field which encompasses emergency and disaster medicine, disaster risk reduction, humanitarian response and health systems strengthening. This is an emerging field urgently needed to be developed, given how health has been confirmed as an outcome and a goal of disaster risk reduction in the Sendai Framework, and the health sector’s critical role in enabling the achievement of the framework’s global targets. The WHO H-EDRM Research Group seeks to provide expert advice and technical support to the health sector, the WHO Thematic Platform, WHO and other UN agencies and partners in H-EDRM research and evidence-related activities for the implementation of the Sendai Framework.

The initial activities of the WHO H-EDRM Research Group have been agreed as follows:

  1. Supporting the formalisation and facilitation of this group;
  2. Supporting the development and maintenance of a directory of H-EDRM research and activities;
  3. Providing research support for the WHO in the area of H-EDRM;
  4. Providing support in updating the WHO fact sheets about disaster risk management and related topics;
  5. Supporting the development of a branded training programme for H-EDRM;
  6. Exploring the development of benchmark standards for H-EDRM training;
  7. Supporting the coordination of H-EDRM thematic meetings; and 
  8. Exploring the establishment of a WHO Collaborating Centre for Disaster Risk

Overall, the WHO H-EDRM Research Group will provide a platform to coordinate and advocate for H-EDRM research activities.