Programme Partner: PATH, Population Services International
Region: Cambodia, Laos & Vietnam
Public Health Emergency Operations Centers (PHEOCs) are centralised units that use data to detect and manage disease outbreaks and other public health threats. Increasingly viewed as necessary components of emergency preparedness, some PHEOC’s have begun expanding their role to incorporate routine disease surveillance and multi-hazard response. However, to date, PHEOCs have not calibrated their response systems to anticipate or prepare for the catastrophic threat of climate change.
If climate forecasting and surveillance activities were built into PHEOC operations and links were formalised between ministries and Nationally Determined Contributions, PHEOCs could be more proactive in taking preparatory action to protect health, safety, livelihoods, critical infrastructure and services. Preparatory action might include targeted vaccination campaigns, medical supplies, food supplies, water quality improvements, warnings, risk education. Using similar tools, our goal is to shift the role of PHEOCs from being purely responsive to climate emergencies toward being anticipatory and proactive.
Through PATH’s 46 years of experience in building global health solutions, we are aiming to better mobilise PHEOCs in the SEA region to predict, prepare, respond to, and recover from health threats that emerge from climate change.