Interagency cooperation for emergency management

Interagency cooperation for emergency management

WOAH works closely with its partner organisations the FAO and WHO to support member countries in the management of disease emergencies.

The Tripartite of FAO, WOAH and WHO

Collaboration with the World Health Organization (WHO) is an important part of the response when animal health crises involve zoonoses (infectious diseases that can be transmitted from animals to people). Tripartite response activities include rapid sharing of information between animal and public health sectors to inform risk assessments and disease interventions; development of joint guidance and communications messages; deployment of joint investigation and response teams (when requested by a country); capacity building at national and regional level; and multi-sectoral coordination.

In this context emergency management is one of the core themes addressed by the Tripartite Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) which specifically refers to ‘improving inter-agency collaboration in foresight analysis, risk assessment, preparedness building and joint responses to emerging, remerging and neglected infectious diseases at the animal-human-ecosystems interface’.

The tripartite utilises existing mechanisms including the Global Early Warning System (GLEWS); Emergency Management Center-Animal Health (CMC-AH); and the joint WOAH/FAO network of expertise on animal influenza (OFFLU)

The WHO, WOAH, and FAO are also active members of the broader network, Global Outbreak Alert and Response Network (GOARN)


Tripartite MOU –

Global Outbreak Alert and Response Network (GOARN)

The Emergency Management Centre – Animal Health (EMC-AH)

Managed by the FAO and located at FAO HQ in Rome, the EMC-AH is a mechanism to provide rapid technical advice and support to countries requesting assistance with animal disease crises. This technical assistance is provided by an EMC-AH multidisciplinary expert team which is deployed to a country following a specific request.

The EMC-AH was initially established in 2006 as the Crisis Management Center-AH (CMC-AH) in response to the rapid global spread of highly pathogenic avian influenza H5N1; however missions were triggered by other aquatic and terrestrial animal health disease events. In 2018 with the adoption of a new strategic action plan, the new name ‘Emergency Management Center-AH’ was adopted and the mandate was broadened to include capacity strengthening for emergency management.

The EMC-AH links with other WOAH, FAO and WHO mechanisms including PVS Pathway and WOAH Reference Center network.

Emergency Management Centre