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The World Health Organization Global Health Emergency Workforce: What Role Will the United States Play?

  • Frederick M. Burkle (a1)

Abstract

During the May 2016 World Health Assembly of 194 member states, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced the process of developing and launching emergency medical teams as a critical component of the global health workforce concept. Over 64 countries have either launched or are in the development stages of vetting accredited teams, both international and national, to provide surge support to national health systems through WHO Regional Organizations and the delivery of emergency clinical care to sudden-onset disasters and outbreak-affected populations. To date, the United States has not yet committed to adopting the emergency medical team concept in funding and registering an international field hospital level team. This article discusses future options available for health-related nongovernmental organizations and the required educational and training requirements for health care provider accreditation. (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2016;10:531–535)

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Copyright

Corresponding author

Correspondence and reprint requests to Frederick M. Burkle, Jr., MD, MPH, Harvard Humanitarian Initiative, 14 Story Street, #2, Cambridge, MA 02138 (e-mail: fburkle@hsph.harvard.edu).

References

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1. World Health Organization. China and Russia teams join WHO’s Emergency Medical Team Initiative. WHO website. http://www.who.int/mediacentre/news/releases/2016/emergency-medical-teams/en/. Published May 26, 2016. Accessed June 10, 2016.
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4. Pan American Health Organization. WHO-PAHO Guidelines for the Use of Foreign Field Hospitals in the Aftermath of Sudden-Impact Disasters. International Meeting: Hospitals in Disasters-Handle with Care. San Salvador, El Salvador, 8-10 July 2003. http://www.who.int/hac/techguidance/pht/FieldHospitalsFolleto.pdf. Accessed May 21, 2016.
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12. Herszenhorn, DM. Senate votes to advance emergency funding to fight Zika Virus. New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/18/us/zika-senate-vote-emergency-funding.html?_r=0. Published May 17, 2016. Accessed June 1, 2016.

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The World Health Organization Global Health Emergency Workforce: What Role Will the United States Play?

  • Frederick M. Burkle (a1)

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