WHO in South-East Asia

Thailand becomes first in SEAR with WHO classified emergency medical team

31 July 2019, Bangkok, Thailand

Thailand today became the first in WHO South-East Asia Region to get WHO classification for its emergency medical team (EMT). This classification makes Thailand EMT the 26th team in the international roster of WHO classified, internationally deployable medical teams.

The classification followed two days of intense evaluation by a team of experts from WHO Regional Office, Ministry of Health of Indonesia, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and the United Kingdom Emergency Medical Team (UK-EMT). Earlier, WHO staff and mentors from Australia and Spain guided and supported the Thailand EMT to meet the global standards.

EMTs are an important part of the global health workforce. Arriving where needed in the shortest time, and delivering quality care appropriate to the context, EMTs can help substantially reduce loss of lives during public health emergencies.

Prone to natural disasters and at risk of climate change related and other health hazards, WHO South-East Asia Region has been investing in strengthening emergency response capacities as a flagship priority since 2014. Last year the Region passed a resolution to strengthen EMT capacities to further bolster emergency response. These efforts are also in sync with WHO’s global goals to ensure one billion more people have better protection from health emergencies.