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Health Services

Chapter 5

Divided into three main sections: Health Systems and Infrastructure; Control of Communicable Diseases; and Control of Non-Communicable Diseases. The organisation of the chapter promotes a systems approach to the design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of health services during a disaster. This is the most reliable means of ensuring that priority health needs are identified and met in an efficient and effective manner. Principles such as supporting national and local health systems, coordination and standardization are stressed throughout.
PDF of Chapter 5 (PDF file 444 KB)


International legal instruments

  • The Right to the Highest Attainable Standard of Health (Article 12 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights), CESCR General comment 14, 11 August 2000, U.N. Doc. E/C.12/2000/4. Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.
  • Baccino-Astrada, A (1982), Manual on the Rights and Duties of Medical Personnel in Armed Conflicts. ICRC. Geneva.
  • Mann, J, Gruskin, S, Grodin, M, Annas, G (eds.) (1999), Health and Human Rights: A Reader. Routledge.
  • WHO (2002), 25 Questions and Answers on Health and Human Rights (via WHO webpage). Health and Human Rights Publication Series, no. 1 July 2002. World Health Organisation. (PDF file 1.03 MB)

Health Systems and Infrastructure

  • Beaglehole R, Bonita R, Kjellstrom T (1993), Basic Epidemiology. World Health Organisation. Geneva. ISBN:  7 117 02324 4
  • Management Sciences for Health (1997), Managing Drug Supply: The Selection, Procurement, Distribution, and Use of Pharmaceuticals (Second Edition). Bloomfield. CT: Kumarian Press Books on International Development. ISBN: 1565490479, 832pp
  • Médecins Sans Frontières (2003), Clinical Guidelines. Diagnostic and Treatment Manual. 5th Edition, Médecins Sans Frontières. Paris.
  • Médecins Sans Frontières (1997), Refugee Health. An Approach to Emergency Situations. Macmillan. London. (PDF file 367 KB)
  • Noji, E (ed) (1997), The Public Health Consequences of Disasters. Oxford University Press. New York. ISBN 0195095707 468 pp
  • Perrin, P (1996), Handbook on War and Public Health. International Committee of the Red Cross. Geneva. 446pp
  • WHO/UNHCR (1999), Guidelines for Drug Donations (via WHO website). Revised 2nd edition, WHO/EDM/PAR/99.4, World Health Organisation and United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. Geneva.
  • UNHCR (2001), Health, Food, and Nutrition Toolkit: Tools and Reference Materials to Manage and Evaluate Health, Food and Nutrition Programmes (via UNHCR website). United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. Geneva.
  • WHO/PAHO (2001), Health Library for Disasters. World Health Organisation/Pan-American Health Organisation. Geneva.
  • WHO (1998), The New Emergency Health Kit 98. 2nd edition, World Health Organisation. Geneva. 79pp. WHO/DAP/98.10
  • WHO (1999), Rapid Health Assessment Protocols for Emergencies (via HELID search page). World Health Organisation. Geneva. ISBN 92 4 120878 3
  • WHO (1994). Health Laboratory Facilities in Emergencies and Disaster Situations (via HELID search page). WHO Regional Publications, Eastern Mediterranean Series, World Health Organisation. Geneva. ISBN 92 9021 182 2. 168pp

Control of Communicable Diseases

Control of Non-Communicable Diseases


  • Hayward-Karlsson, J, Jeffrey, S, Kerr, A et al. (1998), Hospitals for War-Wounded: A Practical Guide for Setting Up and Running a Surgical Hospital in an Area of Armed Conflict. International Committee of the Red Cross. Geneva. 168pp
  • Médecins Sans Frontières (1989), Minor Surgical Procedures in Remote Areas. Médecins Sans Frontières. Paris.
  • PAHO-OPS (1995), Establishing a Mass Casualty Management System (via HELID search page). Pan-American Health Organisation. Geneva. ISBN 92 75 12346 2. 58pp
  • WHO (1991), Surgery at the District Hospital: Obstetrics. Gynaecology, Orthopaedics, and Traumatology (via HELID search page). World Health Organisation. Geneva.
  • WHO (2003) Surgical Care at the District Hospital (via WHO webpage), World Health Organisation. Geneva.ISBN: 92 4 154575 5 (PDF file 6.64 MB)

Reproductive Health

Mental and Social Aspects of Health

  • National Institute of Mental Health (2002), Mental Health and Mass Violence: Evidence-based Early Psychological Interventions for Victims/Survivors of Mass Violence. A Workshop to Reach Consensus on Best Practices. (NIH Publication No. 02-5138). US Government Printing Office. Washington. DC.
  • WHO (2003), Mental Health in Emergencies: Mental and Social Aspects of Populations Exposed to Extreme Stressors. World Health Organisation. Geneva.
  • WHO/UNHCR (1996), Mental Health of Refugees. World Health Organisation. Geneva. (PDF file 5.42 MB)

Chronic Diseases

  • Ahya, SN, Flood, K, Paranjothi, S et al (eds) (2001) The Washington Manual of Medical Therapeutics (30th Edition). LWW Spiral Manuals, Lippincott Williams & Wilkins Publishers. ISBN: 0781723590
  • Braunwald, E, Fauci, AS, Kasper, DL et al (eds) (2001), Harrison’s Principles of Internal Medicine (15th Edition). McGraw Hill Professional. New York.
  • Tierny, LM, McPhee, SJ, Papadakis, MA (eds), Current Medical Diagnosis and Treatment 2003 (42nd Edition). McGraw-Hill/Appleton & Lange. New York. ISBN: 0071395938 1860 pp


Last updated Apr 01, 2011