By Olga B. Jonas, The World Bank - This paper looks at pandemic risk, what it means for development, and how management of this risk could be improved, both in countries and internationally. The paper was motivated by the prevalence of pandemic myths. Widely held beliefs—that pandemics are inevitable and thus not worth worrying about, that the health sector is managing the risks, and that the pandemic risk is not a development issue—lead to underestimation of pandemic risk, scant preparedness, and inadequate prevention. Examining the reasons why these myths persist could help governments and international organizations improve management of the risks associated with pandemics. Read more and download full paper from UN-Influenza.org website: Pandemic Risk paper for the WDR 2014
Read the Newsletter online, or download a PDF (attachment below).
In this issue:
- Global Platform of Disaster Risk Reduction - Taking Stock of Achievements: Charting Future Directions
- “Invest Today for a Safer Tomorrow: Resilient People - Resilient Planet”
- and more...
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The United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) is pleased to announce that the proceedings of the Fourth Session of the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction held 19-23 May 2013 in Geneva is now available online at the following address: http://www.preventionweb.net/globalplatform/2013/news/view/34344
The event brought together 47 members of the TASW network. They examined what has been achieved since 2011 and they considered how best to strengthen the capacity and contribution of the network’s members.
This quarterly newsletter provides TASW network members with an opportunity to share recent activities, case studies and developments that may be of wider interest.
The Towards a Safer World (TASW) initiative was launched after the last ISDR Global Platform in 2011.
The first phase of the initiative was to review the impact of 'whole-of-society' pandemic preparedness efforts since 2005. 11 parameters were used in the analysis and key achievements and lessons were identified.
To assist Member States with the revision of their pandemic plans after the 2009 influenza H1N1 pandemic, WHO/Europe performed an evaluation of the usefulness of pandemic plans and preparedness activities (PPA) undertaken by Member States and WHO in the response to the pandemic. Using a systematic approach, more than 200 individuals representing national, regional and local responders in seven Member States were interviewed. Six major themes considered essential to PPA were identified: communication; coordination; capacity; adaptability/flexibility; leadership; and mutual support.
The TASW Network is a diverse group of energetic and expert practitioners from a variety of sectors, organisations and countries demonstrated how they had initiated whole-of- society preparedness for pandemic and related threats. They also indicated their commitment to maintaining and refining the best practices they have developed. They agreed to communicate it widely, mainstream it within institutions, sustain it, reach out and engage others who might benefit from it, and to continue to learn from each other.
More than 30 Member States in the WHO European Region are in the process of revising their pandemic plans, with two already published. Changes are being made based on lessons learnt from the response to the 2009 pandemic and these follow recommendations from numerous national, regional and global evaluations.