Actioning the Emergency Medical Teams’ initiative in the WHO African Region: strategic paper
Emergency medical teams (EMT) are first response health care providers – doctors, nurses, paramedics, and others – during outbreaks and emergencies or disasters, working with governments, charities such as nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), armies, and international organizations such as the International Red Cross/Red Crescent movement. They comply with the classification and minimum standards set by the World Health Organization (WHO) and its partners and bring to an emergency their training and self-sufficiency so as not to burden the national health system. EMT initiatives strengthen national surge capacities and facilitate the deployment of internationally classified teams of health- care professionals to countries and territories during emergencies, particularly during disease outbreaks and natural disasters, providing immediate assistance when national health systems are overwhelmed . Considering that they aim to support the provision of quality clinical care services to populations affected by public health emergencies, the expectation is that financial resources and equipment will be available to enable the performance of the requested task.