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Global Emergency Medical Teams (EMT)

Global Emergency Medical Teams (EMT)

We support the World Health Organisation Emergency Medical Teams Initiative through our research and training development project.

Global Emergency Medical Teams (EMT)

The World Health Organization (WHO) Emergency Medical Teams (EMT) Initiative

After the Haiti earthquake in Jan 2010, the WHO Pan America Health Organisation (PAHO) and partners convened the first meeting on Emergency Medical Team ("Foreign Medical Teams" at that time) in Cuba to discuss the Haiti response and concluded the need to set standards and a coordination mechanism for EMT. That was the start of the initiative.


In 2013, WHO issued the Classification and Minimum Standards for Emergency Medical Teams (the “Blue Book”) in sudden-onset disasters such as earthquakes and typhoons. These guidelines outline principles and set forth core standards for how registered EMTs must function. The "Blue Book" was used for Typhoon Haiyan operation in 2013 for the first time. Since 2016, the WHO has been registering and verifying qualified EMTs. According to the WHO, over 70 EMTs from over 30 countries have since registered and is in the progress of documentary review from the WHO secretariat with nearly 20 EMTs successfully classified.


For more detailed timeline of the development of the WHO EMT Initiative, please head to the WHO EMT Initiative Historical Timeline. For more information on the WHO EMT Initiative, please head to the WHO EMT Initiative Extranet.


“Training and Research Development for Emergency Medical Teams with Reference to the WHO Global Emergency Medical Teams Initiative and the WHO Classification and Standards”

Since Feb 2016, HKJCDPRI has been supporting the WHO EMT Initiative in its development. In Sept 2016, HKJCDPRI officially signed a collaborative agreement with the Humanitarian and Conflict Response Institute of the University of Manchester to further develop trainings and research agenda in support of the WHO EMT Initiative.


The project aims to develop training and capacity building programmes that are in accordance with the WHO minimum standards, and through identification of best practice and development of standard field operating procedures in interactive and stimulating brainstorming to professionalize EMTs. The project has since delivered a series of trainings, including workshops and exchange tours for EMTs and those interested in the development of EMTs.


On 8 April 2015, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced the newly set up Global Foreign Medical Teams Registry which would enable WHO to build a global roster of foreign medical response teams (FMT) ready to be deployed in sudden onset disasters such as earthquakes, tsunamis, cyclones, floods, and disease outbreaks.  
Co-organised by the World Health Organization (WHO) and HKJCDPRI, the second WHO Emergency Medical Teams (EMT) Global Meeting has been successfully held on 28-30 November...
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