Worldwide Emerging Environmental Issues Affecting the U.S. Military. May 2005 Report
FEDERATION OF UN ASSOCIATIONS WASHINGTON DC MILLENNIUM PROJECT
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The new International Health Regulations adopted by the World Health Organizations annual assembly on May 23, 2005, will increase security against global epidemics of deadly diseases by improving national and international capacity for preventing and responding to disease outbreaks. The new regulations include comprehensive assessment, reporting, and response standards mandatory for each country and to be implemented within a specific timeframe operational mechanisms increased collaboration between countries health offices and with the WHO and a better coordinated international reporting and response system. The regulations stipulate the increased roles of countries and WHO in identifying, preventing, and responding to public health emergencies of international concern. WHO should be quickly informed of any outbreak of four diseases--SARS, bird flu, smallpox and polio--as well as any outbreaks of potential international public health concern from known or unknown causes or sources. The new regulations will formally come into force two years after approved by the Assembly. The new WHO regulations should be distributed to relevant military commands so they can determine the implications for their operations and potentials for collaboration with WHO country offices and the Global Outbreak Alert and Response Network GOARN. Such reviews should also include the new matrix developed by WHO for helping countries identify whether new health incidents are of international concern. Military organizations should be ready to use it on their own initiatives and for their own protection in countries that are not well prepared to respond to the new regulations.
- Military Forces and Organizations
- Environmental Health and Safety