Public health emergency operations centres in Africa: a cross-sectional study assessing the implementation status of core components and areas for improvement, December 2021

Senait Tekeste Fekadu*, Abrham Lilay Gebrewahid, Wessam Mankoula, Womi Eteng, Virgil Lokossou, Yan Kawe, Ali Abdullah, L. Jian, Mathew Tut M. Kol, Menchion Chuck Wilton, Emily Rosenfeld, Valerie Nkamgang Bemo, Emily Collard, Liz McGinley, Ariane Halm, Merawi Aragaw, Ishata Nannie Conteh, Fiona Braka, Abdou Salam Gueye

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objective To assess implementation status of public health emergency operations centres (PHEOCs) in all countries in Africa. Design Cross-sectional. Setting Fifty-four national PHEOC focal points in Africa responded to an online survey between May and November 2021. Included variables aimed to assess capacities for each of the four PHEOC core components. To assess the PHEOCs' functionality, criteria were defined from among the collected variables by expert consensus based on PHEOC operations' prioritisation. We report results of the descriptive analysis, including frequencies of proportions. Results A total of 51 (93%) African countries responded to the survey. Among these, 41 (80%) have established a PHEOC. Twelve (29%) of these met 80% or more of the minimum requirements and were classified as fully functional. Twelve (29%) and 17 (41%) PHEOCs that met 60%-79% and below 60% the minimum requirements were classified as functional and partially functional, respectively. Conclusions Countries in Africa made considerable progress in setting up and improving functioning of PHEOCs. One-third of the responding countries with a PHEOC have one fulfilling at least 80% of the minimum requirements to operate the critical emergency functions. There are still several African countries that either do not have a PHEOC or whose PHEOCs only partially meet these minimal requirements. This calls for significant collaboration across all stakeholders to establish functional PHEOCs in Africa.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere068934
JournalBMJ Open
Volume13
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 20 Jun 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© World Health Organization 2023. Licensee BMJ.

Keywords

  • Health policy
  • Information management
  • PUBLIC HEALTH

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