Lunch symposium: SHARP Joint Action - strengthening capacity in preparing for the unexpected


Friday 11 November, 12:45 - 13:45 CET

 

Organised by

SHARP Joint Action

Background

Despite a high level of preparedness across Europe for health emergencies of biological, chemical, and unknown origin, gaps do exist across the EU Member States and European countries.

SHARP Joint Action brings 300+ specialists; 61 organisations; across 30 countries to strengthen International Health Regulations and Preparedness in the EU. Applying a unique multisectoral, all-hazards lens, SHARP technical work packages provide tangible examples how to be better prepared for the unexpected. Co-funded by the Health Programme of the European Union, SHARP supports to achieve the aims of the revised EU health security framework.

Objectives

This symposium shares the outputs from three key objectives:

Improving core capacity in EU Member States as required by IHR and Decision No 1082/2013/EU

Key insights from a report on better practices to strengthen selected capacities in the EU and neighbouring countries as well as an analysis of simulation exercises in Europe.

Strengthening preparedness and response planning

An overview of the most important lessons learnt regarding multisectoral collaboration during the COVID-19 pandemic; best practise in developing guidance on preparedness and response planning; and insights on how to improve. 

Strengthening IHR implementation through cross-sectoral trainings

A summary of how  SHARP Joint Action developed an IHR basic online course on the solid foundation of available materials from WHO and ECDC, with a focus on cross-sectoral good practice and practical sessions, and also conducted  interactive online sessions on topics such as intra- and after-action reviews.

Delegates will be introduced to:

  • Understanding of existing mechanisms, and insight on how sectors collaborate, and how to do so more efficiently, effectively and equitably
  • The latest strategic thinking and tactics on developing operational, multisectoral preparedness and response plans for serious cross-border health threats
  • The importance of qualified and trained staff to implement IHR, comply with regulations and develop standard operating procedures (SOPs)
  • The complex threats to health and how to drive improvement in their own country’s IHR capacity performance.

We welcome requests for informal meetings during the conference to further explore these topics.  Email: sharp@thl.fi

Programme

Welcome by the chair
Mika Salminen, THL

  • Advise audience of filming
  • Link to EC symposium.  Abstract  outlining the future:  The revised EU health security framework
  • Opportunity to take one question from the floor after each presentation

What is SHARP Joint Action – being prepared for the unexpected. 
Anna Katz, THL

A collaborative, multi-sectoral approach to strengthen preparedness in the EU against serious cross-border threats to health and support the implementation of International Health Regulations. 
Focus on: WPs not represented today

IHR core capacity strengthening and assessment
Sara Bengtsson, Deputy Head of Unit for the Unit for Preparedness and Crisis Management at the Public Health Agency of Sweden

Mari Nythun Utheim, Norwegian Institute of Public Health

Key insights from a report on better practices to strengthen selected capacities in the EU and neighbouring countries as well as an analysis of simulation exercises in Europe.

Strengthening preparedness and response planning.
Sandra Kamga, National Coordination Centre for Communicable Disease Control 
Bettie Voordouw, RIVM

An overview of the most important lessons learnt regarding multisectoral collaboration during the COVID-19 pandemic, insights on developing guidance on preparedness and response planning and discussion on how to improve.  

Strengthening IHR implementation through cross-sectoral trainings. 
Janina Schäfer

A summary of how SHARP Joint Action developed an IHR basic online course on the solid foundation of available materials from WHO and ECDC, with a focus on cross-sectoral good practice and practical sessions, and conducted  interactive online sessions on topics such as intra- and after-action reviews.

Speaker Profiles

Professor Mika Salminen, Ph.D.
For 9 years Professor Salminen has been Director of the Department of Health Security at the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL). He has over 25 years of experience in biomedical and public health research and implementation of public health programmes.
The Department of Health Security has a wide responsibility for national level infectious disease surveillance, preparedness, prevention and control and environmental health protection. It has the National Focal Point functions for the IHR (2005) and the European 1082/EU/2013 decision.
During the Covid-19 pandemic 2020-2022, professor Salminen served as the main scientific epidemic advisor to the Prime Minister’s cabinets.
Since September 2022 Professor Salminen is Director of the Public Health and Welfare Department at THL, with a staff of over 500.

Dr Anna Katz, Ph.D.,
She is a project manager at the Department of Health Security at the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL). Katz is a specialist in microbiology, virology, and molecular biology.  She has worked in infectious diseases, biosecurity, biosafety and public health preparedness for the last 10 years. Katz worked as senior researcher at the Centre for Biothreat Preparedness in Finnish Defence Forces, where she managed domestic and international projects. Katz joined THL in 2018 as project manager of the SHARP Joint Action. She’s been involved in the Covid-19 response and managed a team responsible for the infectious disease control and preparedness at THL.

Sara Bengtsson
She has a Masters in Medical Science from Karolinska Institutet and has over 20 years’ experience on several public health areas.  The Public Health Agency of Sweden is the Work Package 5 leader working with the Partner countries on IHR strengthening.   

Sandra Kamga
She is a PhD student at the National Coordination Centre for Communicable Disease Control, at the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment, in the Netherlands.
She is a medical doctor with additional degrees in political science, media & communication.

Bettie Voordouw
Medical microbiologist, MPH, PhD, specialization in virology, vaccinology and public health microbiology; alternate member National Focal Point Microbiology. Management experience and extensive exposure in different international public health and policy (e.g. WHO, EMA, EU, ECDC).  Acting microbiologist for clinical diagnostics at RIVM.

Janina Schäfer
Research associate at the Unit for Crisis Management, Outbreak Investigations and Training Programmes; Focal Point for the Public Health Service, Department for Infectious Disease Epidemiology, Robert Koch Institute, Germany.

Registration

Registration is not required. Delegates can attend these meetings free of charge. Get your lunch in the Exhibiton / Catering Area and take it to the session room.