Humanitarian Health Action

WHO's Responsibilities

This is achieved by ensuring presence and operational capacity in the field to strengthen coordinated public health management for optimal immediate impact, collective learning and health sector accountability.

  • Identify priority health and nutrition-related issues and ensuring that these are properly addressed in an integrated primary health care approach that preserves and strengthens local health system.
  • Strengthening health and nutrition surveillance systems to enable monitoring of any changes, early warning of deterioration, and immediate life-saving action through outbreak response and technically sound nutrition interventions.
  • Ensuring control of preventable ill health particularly communicable and vaccine-preventable diseases.
  • Ensuring that risks related to the environment are recognized and properly managed.
  • Ensuring access to basic, good quality, preventive and curative care including essential drugs and vaccines for all, with special focus on the especially vulnerable - the elderly, the very young, pregnant women, the disabled and the chronically ill.
  • Ensuring that Humanitarian Health Assessment is in line with international standards and local priorities and does not compromise future health development.
  • Advocating and negotiating for secure humanitarian access, and neutrality and protection of health workers, and the operation of services and structures as integral parts of public health provision.
  • Ensuring that the lessons learnt in a crisis are used to improve health sector preparedness for future crises and disaster reduction.
  • Defining an integrated health policy for preparedness, emergency response and post conflict, for a coherent health sector development resilient to emergencies, to link relief efforts with national capacities and initiate future health system reform.