Resolutions

WPR/RC57.R2

Asia Pacific Strategy for Emerging Diseases, including the International Health Regulations (2005) and Avian Influenza

         The Regional Committee,

         Recalling resolutions WHA48.13 on new, emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases, WHA58.3 on revision of the International Health Regulations, WHA58.5 on Strengthening Pandemic Influenza Preparedness and Response, and WHA59.2 on Application of the International Health Regulations (2005) which called upon Member States to comply immediately, on a voluntary basis, with provisions relevant to the risk posed by avian influenza and pandemic influenza;

         Recalling resolution WPR/RC56.R4 on the Asia Pacific Strategy for Emerging Diseases (APSED), which urged Member States to use the Strategy as a framework to guide national capacity-building programmes for emerging diseases and requested the Regional Director to develop a workplan to further implement the Strategy;

         Reaffirming the continuing pandemic influenza risk due to ongoing outbreaks of avian influenza, and the serious threats arising from emerging infectious diseases in Asia and the Pacific;

         Aware that not all countries and areas in the Western Pacific Region currently have strong public health surveillance and response systems and the minimum capacities required to deal with emerging infectious disease threats;

        Acknowledging that most countries and areas are not well prepared to rapidly respond to an influenza pandemic and other public health emergencies in a way that would minimize potentially immeasurable economic and social impacts;

        Recognizing the urgent need for immediate action to strengthen local, national and regional capacity to rapidly detect, report and respond to disease events, in particular those caused by emerging diseases, in accordance with the requirements of the International Health Regulations (2005), which enter into force on 15 June 2007;

        Highlighting the importance of and the need for a common framework and guidance for countries and partners to meet the commitments of the International Health Regulations (2005) and for the strengthening of country surveillance and response systems in the Region;

        Having reviewed the conclusions and recommendations of the First Meeting of the Asia Pacific Technical Advisory Group on Emerging Infectious Diseases;

1.     ENDORSES the recommendations of the First Meeting of the Asia Pacific Technical Advisory Group on Emerging Infectious Diseases;

2.     URGES Member States:

(1) to develop and implement a national workplan for the implementation of APSED to ensure effective pandemic preparedness and the establishment and maintenance of the core capacities required under the International Health Regulations (2005);

(2) to strengthen political commitment, mobilize human and financial resources, and develop national evaluation measures necessary for effectively implementing the national workplan to ensure that the minimum capacities are functional by 2010;

(3) to implement immediate priority activities concerning avian influenza and pandemic influenza with long-term objectives that will also ensure the strengthening of surveillance and response capacity for other infectious diseases;

(4) to inform WHO of the designation of an International Health Regulations (2005) National Focal Point and to ensure its essential functions, including effective communications with WHO and other relevant sectors within the country;

(5) to begin reviewing, and adjusting when necessary, existing domestic legislation to align it with the International Health Regulations (2005) which, in turn, will support the effective implementation of APSED;

(6) to report progress on the implementation of APSED at the next meeting of the Asia Pacific Technical Advisory Group on Emerging Infectious Diseases;

3.     REQUESTS the Regional Director:

(1) to implement relevant recommendations of the First Meeting of the Asia Pacific Technical Advisory Group on Emerging Infectious Diseases;

(2) to support Member States in strengthening national capacities required to comply with the International Health Regulations (2005) through APSED implementation;

(3) to mobilize the resources necessary for WHO to ensure the implementation of the APSED Workplan and to fulfil the responsibilities required under the International Health Regulations (2005);

(4) to regularly report progress on the implementation of the WHO APSED Workplan to the Regional Committee at its future sessions.

20 September 2006


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