Timely report of emergency response urged
Updated: 2006-07-14 12:19 China's Ministry of Health on
Thursday urged local authorities to make timely reports of their responses to
public health emergencies caused by disasters.
Health departments must deliver a report of the disaster and consequent
disease outbreaks to higher health authorities within 24 hours of the disaster
Disease control and assessment of potential hazards to public health should
be included in the report to be sent through a national reporting network as
well as in document, said the ministry in a statement.
The disasters mentioned include those caused by human activities as well as
natural disasters, such as floods, droughts, severe weather, earthquakes, forest
fires, and geological, biological and maritime calamities.
The occurrence of a disaster should be confirmed by authorities above county
Emergency response offices had been set up by health departments in 27
provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities across China by the end of
2005, according to the ministry.
At least 66 percent of township clinics, 93.21 percent of public health
institutions at and above the county level, and all local disease control
centers across the country were able to report public health incidents to higher
authorities through the network.
The State Council held a national meeting on emergency management last week,
urging local governments to examine hidden dangers that could make natural
disasters worse and improve emergency response plans.