RAPID HEALTH ASSESSMENT PROTOCOLS FOR EMERGENCIES
( By WHO - OMS, 1999 )

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2 - Preparedness

In dealing with epidemics, the steps below must be carried out, along with the seven preparedness measures listed in Chapter 1, so that the assessment can be rapid.


Make preliminary preparations for rapid collection and shipment of specimens to reference laboratories.

Assemble standard data collection forms, specimen containers, slides, and other laboratory supplies for the epidemic diseases that are likely to occur.

Stock the necessary protective clothing and equipment against potential communicable diseases associated with high mortality.

Clarify procedures for national and international disease reporting.


Team members should be technically competent to assess the suspected disease both clinically and epidemiologically, and knowledgeable about other diseases possibly involved. Optimally, they should have received training in rapid epidemic assessment, or have prior experience in outbreak investigation.

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