Cover Image
close this bookCommunity Emergency Preparedness: A Manual for Managers and Policy-Makers (WHO, 1999, 141 p.)
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentPreface
View the documentAcknowledgements
close this folderChapter 1 Introduction
View the documentDecision-making for emergency preparedness
View the documentWhat is emergency preparedness?
View the documentCommunity participation
View the documentProject management
View the documentSummary
View the documentReferences
close this folderChapter 2 Policy development
View the documentPolicy
View the documentEmergency preparedness policy
View the documentIssues in emergency management policy
View the documentSummary
View the documentReference
close this folderChapter 3 Vulnerability assessment
View the documentIntroduction
View the documentThe process of vulnerability assessment
View the documentThe planning group
View the documentHazard identification
View the documentHazard description
View the documentDescribing the community
View the documentDescription of effects and vulnerability
View the documentHazard prioritization
View the documentRecommending action
View the documentSummary
View the documentReferences
close this folderChapter 4 Emergency planning
View the documentIntroduction
View the documentAn emergency planning process
View the documentPlanning group review
View the documentPotential problem analysis
View the documentResource analysis
View the documentRoles and responsibilities
View the documentManagement structure
View the documentStrategies and systems
View the documentContent of community emergency plans
View the documentSummary
View the documentReferences
close this folderChapter 5 Training and education
View the documentIntroduction
View the documentA systematic approach to training
View the documentPublic education
View the documentSummary
View the documentReferences
close this folderChapter 6 Monitoring and evaluation
View the documentIntroduction
View the documentProject management
View the documentChecklists
View the documentExercises
View the documentSummary
close this folderAnnexes
View the documentAnnex 1 - Project management
View the documentAnnex 2 - Hazard description tables
View the documentAnnex 3 - Emergency preparedness checklists
View the documentAnnex 4 - Personal protection in different types of emergencies
View the documentSelected WHO publications of related interest


This manual is designed to assist those concerned with preparing for emergencies at the local level. It explains what emergency preparedness is and how to achieve it in an effective, appropriate way. It is intended principally for:

- local organizations and managers responsible for emergency planning (e.g. health sector administrators, directors of public works organizations, hospital administrators, and heads of volunteer organizations); and

- national and international officials involved in emergency management.

National civil protection bodies, emergency management organizations, and sectoral departments, such as public health authorities, are responsible for ensuring the safety and security of a nation’s people, resources, and environment in the face of hazards. It is at the community level, however, that the full effects of emergencies are felt, and it is there that definitive achievements in emergency preparedness can be made. It is difficult for national and international emergency organizations to form an effective working relationship with a community that is unaware of its hazards and unprepared for emergencies.

The key to emergency preparedness is the involvement and commitment of all relevant individuals and organizations at every level - community, provincial, national, and international. This multisectoral approach means that many organizations accept clearly-defined responsibilities and the need to coordinate their efforts. Without their involvement and commitment, emergency preparedness becomes fragmented, inefficient, and poorly coordinated.

Self-evidently, one of the principal effects of any emergency will be on the health of the population. Preparedness within the health sector was felt to be beyond the scope of this manual; a separate WHO publication devoted entirely to health sector preparedness is planned.

The term “emergency” in this manual is used in the broadest possible sense. One person’s emergency may be another’s mere incident, and disasters cause problems above and beyond smaller emergencies. Nevertheless, the processes of emergency preparedness can be used to develop systems and programmes for coping with every scale of adverse events. Similarly, the same preparedness processes can be used for enhancing the safety of a building, a community, or an entire country.

This manual explains the processes of policy development, vulnerability assessment, emergency planning, training and education, and monitoring and evaluation for use in a wide range of emergency management applications.