Humanitarian Health Action

Technical consultation on the health component of post-disaster and post-conflict needs assessments and recovery planning

28-29 April 2011 Granada, Spain

Post-disaster needs assessments (PDNA) bring together information on the physical, economic and human impact of a disaster and its consequences on governance systems. They are the foundation on which early and long-term recovery and reconstruction needs and priorities are identified. A similar process exists for post-conflict situations (PCNA) to review the consequences of a conflict, prevent a renewal of the conflict, and shape short- and mid-term recovery priorities. Both types of assessment should be conducted under the leadership of the affected country and in collaboration with United Nations agencies, the World Bank and the European Commission, as agreed in a Memorandum of Understanding between the three entities.

In order to support the development of health sector guidance for both PDNAs and PCNAs, WHO and the Andalusian School of Public Health in Granada organized a technical consultation bringing together humanitarian and development actors, organizations and institutions working in natural disaster and conflict situations (NGOs and UN), representatives from countries where PDNAs or PCNAs have taken place as well as representatives from academic institutions.

The main conclusions of the meeting were that PCNAs and PDNAs should not be perceived as planning instruments in isolation, but should link humanitarian relief with recovery efforts. Furthermore, national ownership needs to be fostered, also by linking the recovery plan that results from the needs assessment with national development plans.

The next steps will be to finalize the sectoral guidance methodologies for PCNAs and PDNAs based on the inputs from this meeting and to build an informal network for lessons learned and guidance development.

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