Ministry of Health Drafting Multi-Hazard Disaster Plan for a Public Health Emergency

Minister of Health, Social Affairs and Labour Emil Lee


GREAT BAY, Sint Maarten (DCOMM) – The Department of Collective Prevention Services (CPS) which falls under the Ministry of Public Health, Social Development and Labour (Ministry VSA), is currently in the process of creating a Multi-Hazard Disaster Manual for the event of a Public Health Emergency.

The aforementioned will be in line with International Health Regulations (IHR) of the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) Plan of Action 2016-2021 for the creation of a resilient health sector.

Starting on May 10 until May 12, a follow-up multi-hazard workshop will be held that will include CPS staff, stakeholders and a representative from PAHO.

The workshop is a follow-up to the first one that was held in May 2016.

The WHO embarked on the process to reduce the risks of disasters where protecting people’s health is at the centre of a new international framework.

The Haiyan Typhoon in the Philippines to the Ebola crisis in West Africa, have highlighted the centrality of human health to collective goals in disaster risk reduction by all sectors.

WHO has designed a new policy framework Reducing Health Consequences of Emergencies and Disasters: A Risk Management Policy Guide to help countries to effectively manage emergency risks and reduce their health consequences.

Recognizing the importance of multi-hazard early warning systems to disaster risk reduction, WHO renewed its commitment to help all Member States achieve their core capacities to detect, assess, notify and respond to epidemics and other public health threats under the International Health Regulations (2005).

WHO has also released a new Comprehensive Safe Hospital Framework and launched the Hospital Safety Index (2nd Edition) to make hospitals safe and operational in disasters, which was one of the key targets under discussion in Sendai.

WHO’s collaboration with the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) to establish the WHO-WMO Climate and Health Office and implement the Global Framework for Climate Services to meet the climate information needs of the health sector will also contribute significantly to reducing risks to health of extreme weather and climate-related hazards and climate-sensitive diseases.

CPS is looking forward to the workshop which PAHO is assisting with.  PAHO helps regional countries with health disaster risk management assessment in order to build disaster resilience throughout the Region.