Between 2005 and 2014, disasters have caused total damage of US$1.4 trillion worldwide, with 1.7 billion people affected and 0.7 million killed. With climate change, urbanization, environmental degradation and poverty, the world has been experiencing disasters at a higher frequency and intensity. To be effective, disaster management strategy must be able to meet the health needs of the affected population. With non-communicable diseases (NCDs) now being the major disease burden and leading causes of death worldwide, the traditional health focus of humanitarian response on acute conditions is no longer sufficient to address population health needs in disaster and emergency context.Read More
You are here
Many structural issues related to disasters, including issues affecting the effectiveness of preparedness measures and response, can only be dealt with by interventions at policy level. Disaster and health policy briefs related to the role of various medical / health subspecialties in building emergency health resilience and community resilience, will inform governmental and business leaders and thus impact local and regional policy. Policy discussions at the online regional network of Hong Kong Jockey Club Disaster Preparedness and Response Institute will hope to bring about important idea exchanges.
Early warning systems are critical to protecting populations from harm during disasters. The recent Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction highlights a need to increase the availability of and access to early warning systems as a priority target.1 A number of nations, including Hong Kong, have already established highly developed early warning systems. However, the changing landscape of communication technologies has created both opportunities and challenges for people as they navigate a greater number of information networks, and a higher frequency of messaging.Read More
Between 2005 and 2014, disasters have caused total damage of US$1.4 trillion worldwide, with 1.7 billion people affected and 0.7 million killed. With climate change, urbanization, environmental degradation and poverty, the world has been experiencing disasters at a higher frequency and intensity. At the same time, global population is ageing at an unprecedented speed: between 2015 and 2030, the number of persons aged 60 years or over in the world is projected to grow by 56%, from 901 million to more than 1.4 billion. Older people therefore is going to be an increasingly important group, in terms of both their contribution and vulnerabilities, in the face of disasters.Read More
Climate change is one of the main global environmental changes the world is experiencing in the 21st century. Urban communities are vulnerable to climate impacts due to the high density of living arrangements and heavy reliance on life-line infrastructures for basic survival needs. This policy brief examines and discusses the human health impacts of climate change in Hong Kong, and presents key recommendations to support resilience building for the health challenges posed by climate change for the decades to come.Read More
The psychological impacts of disaster are an increasingly recognized public health priority. Despite this, the management of mental health risks is often poorly coordinated in the aftermath of complex emergencies. Hong Kong is limited in its capacity to engage with the public and promote effective services for psychological trauma treatments. Community awareness about the importance of disaster mental health in Hong Kong is also low. Long-term policy direction and more resources are required to support the current system of psychosocial services. This policy brief suggests best practice for disaster mental health and the implementation of trauma-informed services in Hong Kong.Read More
The SARS epidemic in 2003 was the trigger leading to a reform of China’s emergency management system. In 2007, the Chinese government adopted and enacted the “Emergency Response Law of the People's Republic of China”. The purpose of this law is to prevent and reduce the occurrence of emergencies, control, mitigate and eliminate the serious social harm caused by emergencies, regulating activities in response to emergencies, protecting the lives and property of the people, and maintaining national security, public security, environmental safety and public order. Following the restructuring of the emergency management system, the public health emergency management system has consequently undergone a significant change. Read More
The Hong Kong Jockey Club Disaster Preparedness & Response Institute (HKJCDPRI), launched in 2014, is focused on establishing an evidence base in support of “effective disaster preparedness and response, both for Hong Kong and the Asia Pacific region.” This policy brief proposes a detailed agenda for the HKJCDPRI Center of Excellence in Disaster Preparedness and Response. Acknowledging the growing global shift from top-down emergency response systems to contextualized community-specific approaches, and the WHO-led coordination and standardization of Emergency Medical Teams, this brief outlines a research and training agenda that prioritizes community resilience.Read More
This policy brief is a part of the related research of the HKJCDPRI 5-year project. It outlines the existing emergency and disaster response system, a 3-tier system currently operating in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR). Despite past epidemics, there remains a low level of community awareness, participation in basic first aid training and emergency preparedness.
Hong Kong is a dynamic high-income city with robust disaster preparedness. Within government and non-government agencies, contingency plans and disaster drills have been carefully considered and rehearsed. However, a significant gap exists in community awareness and engagement in disaster preparedness activities. Based on one of the findings of the Scoping Study, there is a broad recognition among agency leaders and the community of the need to improve community engagement in all aspects of disaster management. This policy brief provides insights on how to lay a foundation of community engagement in Hong Kong.Read More