The 4th Global Health Security Agenda High-Level Ministerial Meeting

The Global Health Security Agenda

 The Global Health Security Agenda (GHSA) was launched in February 2014 and is a growing partnership of over 50 nations, international organizations, and non-governmental stakeholders to help build countries’ capacity to help create a world safe and secure from infectious disease threats and elevate global health security as a national and global priority.

GHSA acknowledges the essential need to pursue a multilateral and multisectoral approach to strengthen both the global capacity and nations' capacity to prevent, detect, and respond to infectious diseases threats whether naturally occurring, deliberate, or accidental–capacity that once established would mitigate the devastating effects of Ebola, MERS, other highly pathogenic infectious diseases, and bioterrorism events.

Through a partnership of nearly 50 nations, international organizations, and non-governmental stakeholders, GHSA is facilitating collaborative, capacity-building efforts to achieve specific and measurable targets around biological threats, while accelerating achievement of the core capacities required by the World Health Organization's (WHO's) International Health Regulations (IHR), the World Organization of Animal Health's (OIE) Performance of Veterinary Services Pathway, and other relevant global health security frameworks. This partnership is led and supported by a GHSA Steering Group composed of 10 member nations. The Chair of this Steering Group is filled by a different nation each year.

In addition to individual countries, advisory partners include the WHO, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the OIE, Interpol, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR), and the European Union.


Our vision is a world safe and secure from global health threats posed by infectious diseases – where we can prevent or mitigate the impact of naturally occurring outbreaks and accidental or intentional releases of dangerous pathogens, rapidly detect and transparently report outbreaks when they occur, and employ an interconnected global network that can respond effectively to limit the spread of infectious disease outbreaks in humans and animals, mitigate human suffering and the loss of human life, and reduce economic impact.

Global health security is a shared responsibility that cannot be achieved by a single actor or sector of government. Its success depends upon collaboration among the health, security, environment. and agriculture sectors. 

External assessments are a vital tool to measure progress toward increased capacity, and a continued, transparent, objective assessment process is necessary to validate our collective success in GHSA implementation. The GHSA Steering Group has developed a voluntary assessment process that can independently assess the health security of each country, as well as offer assistance in determining the measures necessary for improving health security. Evaluations can be used to strengthen the countries' own efforts in the detection, prevention, and control of communicable diseases and biological threats, as well as provide a mechanism to match gaps in capacity to resources.

Country Assessments

External assessments are a vital tool to measure progress toward increased capacity, and a continued, transparent, objective assessment process is necessary to validate our collective success in GHSA implementation.

In 2015, the GHSA piloted in six countries including Uganda a voluntary external evaluation of 11 discrete Action Packages aimed at developing core public health capacities to Prevent, Detect and Respond to epidemic threats as provided for in the International Health Regulations adopted by the 58th World Health Assembly in 2005 [IHR (2005)]. In 2016, the WHO expanded this process and developed a Joint External Evaluation (JEE) tool to assess an additional eight Action Packages (19 in total) related to the IHR 2005, also centered on prevention, early detection, containment, and rapid multi-sectoral coordinated responses to epidemic threats.

As stated by WHO: “Joint external evaluations allow countries to identify the most urgent needs within their health security system, to prioritize opportunities for enhanced preparedness, response and action, and to engage with current and prospective donors and partners to target resources effectively. Transparency is an important element in order to attract and direct resources to where they are needed most.” As of 18 July 2017, 52 JEEs have been conducted in six regions, and 25 countries have scheduled a JEE for 2017 or 2018. Uganda completed its JEE in June 2017. The lessons learned from this and other JEE assessments will be discussed at the Kampala Ministerial Meeting and will further inform the process for other member states.

JEE mission reports can found at

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