Eurosurveillance banner




Announcements
Follow Eurosurveillance on Twitter: @Eurosurveillanc


In this issue


Home Eurosurveillance Weekly Release  2003: Volume 7/ Issue 22 Article 2 Printer friendly version
Back to Table of Contents
Previous Next

Eurosurveillance, Volume 7, Issue 22, 29 May 2003
Articles

Citation style for this article: Intergovernmental working group to take forward revision of the International Health Regulations. Euro Surveill. 2003;7(22):pii=2235. Available online: http://www.eurosurveillance.org/ViewArticle.aspx?ArticleId=2235

Intergovernmental working group to take forward revision of the International Health Regulations

Editorial team (eurowkly@hpa.org.uk), Eurosurveillance editorial office

The 56th World Health Assembly, which convened 19-28 May 2003, has decided to establish and intergovernmental working group open to all member states to review and recommend a draft revision of the International Health Regulations (1, 2).

The Assembly urged member states to establish immediately a national standing task force or equivalent group and, within it, to designate an official or officials having operational responsibilities and accessible at all times by telephone or electronic communication, to ensure speed, particularly during emergencies, of both reporting to the World Health Organization (WHO) and consultation with national authorities when urgent decisions must be made.

Collaboration, when appropriate, with veterinary, agricultural and other relevant agencies involved in animal care in the research on, and planning and implementation of, preventive control measures was also urged.

The director general of the WHO has been requested by the Assembly to take into account reports from sources other than official notifications, to validate these reports according to established epidemiological principles, and to alert, when necessary and after informing the government concerned, the international community to the presence of a public health threat that may constitute a serious threat to neighbouring countries or to international health.

The latest developments in the revision of the international health regulations have been driven by the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) epidemic. In its resolution on SARS (2), the Assembly urged the director general to update and standardise guidelines on international travel, particularly air travel; to update surveillance guidelines, including case definitions, clinical and laboratory diagnosis, and management, and effective preventive measures; and to review and update the classification of 'areas with recent transmission'.

A useful document on the status of the SARS outbreak and lessons for the immediate future was prepared by WHO for presentation to the Assembly (http://www.who.int/csr/media/sars_wha.pdf).

References:
  1. World Health Organization. Revision of the International Health Regulations. WHA56.28. Resolution of the Fifty-sixth World Health Assembly, Geneva 19-28 May 2003. 28 May 2003 (http://www.who.int/gb/EB_WHA/PDF/WHA56/ea56r28.pdf) [accessed 5 June 2003]
  2. WHO Communicable Disease Surveillance & Response Situation Updates. SARS update 67 - SARS resolution approved, situation in Taiwan. 27 May 2003. (http://www.who.int/csr/don/2003_05_27a/en/) [accessed 29 May 2003]
  3. World Health Organization. Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS). WHA56.29. Resolution of the Fifty-sixth World Health Assembly, Geneva 19-28 May 2003. 28 May 2003 (http://www.who.int/gb/EB_WHA/PDF/WHA56/ea56r29.pdf) [accessed 5 June 2003]

back to top



Back to Table of Contents
Previous Next

Disclaimer:The opinions expressed by authors contributing to Eurosurveillance do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) or the editorial team or the institutions with which the authors are affiliated. Neither ECDC nor any person acting on behalf of ECDC is responsible for the use that might be made of the information in this journal.
The information provided on the Eurosurveillance site is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between a patient/site visitor and his/her physician. Our website does not host any form of commercial advertisement.

Eurosurveillance [ISSN] - ©2007-2013. All rights reserved
 

This website is certified by Health On the Net Foundation. Click to verify. This site complies with the HONcode standard for trustworthy health information:
verify here.