Crisis preparedness and response

International cooperation

At the global level, the EU collaborates with international players on health security issues. As a member of the Global Health Security Initiative (GHSI), the European Commission works closely with the WHO and the "G7+" states (USA, Canada, UK, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and Mexico) in an effort to create an effective and well-organised global strategy for preparedness, and response to potential health threats.

Global Health Security Initiative

The GHSI was set up in November 2001, under the leadership of former U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Although only four EU countries are official members of the GHSI, the membership of the European Commission assures that outcomes of its discussions are communicated to all EU countries through its own Health Security Committee.

The GHSI Ministerial Forum convenes on an annual basis with the attendance of Ministers, Secretaries and the Commissioner for Health from "G7+" countries and the European Commission. The World Health Organisation is also involved as a technical advisor.

GHSI Achievements

  • Strengthened smallpox preparedness and response
  • Improving international communication and risk management
  • Testing and enhancing laboratory capacity
  • Advancing global pandemic influenza preparedness and response
  • Preparation efforts against chemical and radiological threats

With the World Health Organisation, it is developing a road map for joint work on: