Epidemics and pandemics can place sudden and intense demands on health systems. They expose existing weaknesses in these systems and, in addition to their morbidity and mortality can disrupt economic activity and development.
The world requires a global system that can rapidly identify and contain public health emergencies and reduce panic and the disruption of trade, travel and society. The recently revised International Health Regulations (IHR 2005) require WHO Member States to assess, develop, strengthen and maintain their country's capacity at a level to meet the minimum core capacity requirements for disease surveillance and response. There is an increasing need to develop and implement joint activities to strengthen national and regional capacity to detect and respond rapidly and effectively to emerging diseases and other health emergencies of national and international concern.
CSR assists countries with building an integrated alert and response system for epidemics and other public health emergencies based on strong national public health systems and capacity and an effective international system for coordinated response.