Emergencies preparedness, response

Ebola: Then and Now

23 November 2015 -- More than 1 year has passed since the Ebola epidemic hit West Africa. Strong leadership, responsiveness to cultures and innovation have turned the tide in the fight against Ebola. The "Ebola: Then and Now" series features people who have been involved for the last year and their reflections on the changes and progress that has been made.

Flare up of Ebola in Liberia

UN helicopter arrives with UN staff during the Ebola outbreak in West Africa

23 November 2015 -- On 19 November 2015, Liberia identified a new "flare-up" of Ebola after stopping transmission in September. There are currently three confirmed cases from the same family being treated in an Ebola treatment unit in Monrovia and 150 contacts being monitored. Bruce Aylward, Special Representative of the Director-General for the Ebola Response, gave a full briefing on the current state of the Ebola outbreak on 20 November.

Ebola response phase 3

Health care worker training after Ebola, Liberia
WHO/M. Winkler

18 September 2015 -- The Ebola Phase 3 framework incorporates new knowledge and tools into the ongoing Ebola response and recovery work to achieve and sustain a "resilient zero". Phase 3 builds upon the rapid scale-up of treatment beds, safe and dignified burial teams, and behaviour change capacities during Phase 1; and the enhanced capacities for case finding, contract tracing, and community engagement during Phase 2. It includes new developments and breakthroughs in Ebola control, from vaccines, diagnostics and response operations to survivor counselling and care.

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Our vision

An integrated global alert and response system for epidemics and other public health emergencies based on strong national public health systems and capacity and an effective international system for coordinated response.

Core functions

  • Support Member States for the implementation of national capacities for epidemic preparedness and response in the context of the IHR(2005), including laboratory capacities and early warning alert and response systems;
  • Support national and international training programmes for epidemic preparedness and response;
  • Coordinate and support Member States for pandemic and seasonal influenza preparedness and response;
  • Develop standardized approaches for readiness and response to major epidemic-prone diseases (e.g. meningitis, yellow fever, plague);
  • Strengthen biosafety, biosecurity and readiness for outbreaks of dangerous and emerging pathogens outbreaks (e.g. SARS, viral haemorrhagic fevers); Maintain and further develop a global operational platform to support outbreak response and support regional offices in implementation at regional level.

Latest publications

Website for Information and Communication Technologies for Public Health Emergency Management launched

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Global Infection Prevention and Control Network (GIPC Network) Launch

WHO Unit on Disease Control in Humanitarian Emergencies - DCE

Natural ventilation design project website launched

Communicable disease alert and response for mass gatherings