NTI Vice President Elizabeth Cameron and NTI | bio experts Michelle Nalabandian and Beenish Pervaiz co-authored an article published in BMC Public Health, “Establishing a theoretical foundation for measuring global health security: a scoping review” The article, written with colleagues at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, examined academic literature to identify evidence, as well as practice-based indicators and proxies, for measuring health security at the country level. The authors developed four key principles that are important for measuring health security capacity. Key among these is the need to measure broader factors in health security assessments, including core public health, healthcare, and biosecurity capabilities, as well as consideration of national social, political, and environmental risks.
Following the 2014–2016 West Africa Ebola epidemic and the launch of the Global Health Security Agenda, the global health and international security communities have placed a greater priority on measuring health security capacity, identifying gaps, and financing improvements. In addition, recent outbreaks of Ebola, influenza, the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, and the Zika virus, have illustrated the importance of understanding the impact of factors such as a country’s health system and political, social, and environmental risks on epidemic preparedness. Regular and transparent tracking of the evolution of these and other health security capacities over time in all countries could help eliminate sources of health insecurity.The results of this scoping review are informing development of a Global Health Security Index (GHS Index), which will provide the first comprehensive assessment and benchmark of health security and related capabilities across 195 countries. The GHS Index will be a valuable tool for highlighting current needs by individual countries and boosting compliance with international standards for epidemic preparedness.
Read the full article here.