Legislative aspects for IHR implementation at airports Thomas Hofmann Division of Communicable Diseases, Health Security, & Environment WHO Regional Office for Europe
Overview and legal significance of the IHR • IHR (2005) was adopted unanimously by governments of all WHO Member States during the World Health Assembly in May 2005 • Entry into force in June 2007 • One exception: there is a five year phase until 2012 for (technical) IHR Core Capacities development (Annex 1) • Binding international law for the entire government of - in the meantime - 194 Member States • National ratification is not required
Broad legal scope and coverage of IHR • “Point of entry (PoE)” – a passage for international entry or exit of travellers, baggage, cargo, containers, conveyances, goods and postal parcels as well as agencies and areas providing services to them on entry and exit • “Disease”: “an Illness or medical condition, irrespective of origin or source, that presents or could present significant harm to humans” • “Event”: “a manifestation of disease or an occurrence that creates the potential for disease” • "Public health risk": "the likelihood of an event that may adversely affect the health of human populations, …" • Covered events/risks may be: • Biological/infectious (including zoonoses), chemical, radio-nuclear • Known or unknown, emerging or re-emerging • Transmissible by persons, transport conveyances, cargo/goods food/animals/products), vectors, environment, etc.
Domestic Areas Affected by IHR (2005) • Public health • Environment • International ports, airports, ground crossings • Customs • Food safety • Agriculture (including animal health) • Radiation/radiology and nuclear safety • Chemical safety • Industry • Transportation (including dangerous goods) • Collection, use and disclosure of health-related information • Public health related-activities of authorities or other relevant government entities • Ministries Affected by IHR (2005) • Health • Environment • Transportation • Borders/Ports/Airports/Customs • Energy • Agriculture/Food • Industry • Communications • Disaster Management and Response • Interior • Foreign Affairs • Executive Branch and/or municipal, sub-national, or local offices • Others IHR implementation can impact many ministries, sectors and governmental levels
Key provisions for States Parties (1) • Designate international airports for developing minimum public health capacities • Identify the competent authority for implementing the IHR requirements at each PoE • Maintain facilities used by travelers in a sanitary conditions and free of sources of infection and contamination • Provide vector control for >400 meters from international passenger terminals and operational areas • Adopt Aircraft General Declaration – Annex 9 (Health Part) • Annex of the declaration includes the Passenger Locator Card
Key provisions for States Parties (2) • Monitoring, supervision and inspection programmes • Have capacities to adopt health measures recommended by WHO • Collaborate internationally with WHO and other States Parties • Furnish relevant data to WHO on request, in response to a specific potential public health risk, information concerning sources of infection and contamination at PoEs which could result in international disease spread
Role of Competent Authorities (Part I, Article 1. Definitions; Article 22) “Competent authority means an authority responsible for the implementation and application of health measures under these Regulations” Role • Develop Core Capacities (Annex 1B) at designated PoE • Keep all the facilities used by international travellers free from infection and contamination, including vectors and reservoirs • Apply health measures recommended by WHO • Communication with conveyance operators, with other authorities at PoE, with local/regional/national surveillance structures
Role of Conveyances Operators under IHR Conveyance operators shall keep vessels free of sources of infection and contamination and facilitate: a) inspection of the cargo, and containers b) medical examinations of persons on board c) application of other health measures d) provide relevant public health information requested by the State Party, including the relevant IHR documents: Health Part of Aircraft General Declaration, Certificate of vaccination and prophylaxis, etc.
Approaches for legislative processes • Capacity assessments • Multi-sectoral • All levels • Review of national legislation • Review of regulations, decrees, orders, ordinances, decisions of different bodies, resolutions, rules and administrative procedures related to the operational implementation of the IHR
Potential areas for legislation at PoEs (1) • Coordination of national process for designation of selected airports under IHR • Definition of roles, incl. financial responsibility and timeline, i.e. 15 June 2012 • Authorizing IHR National Focal Point as national communication hub for events at PoE • Obligations of airlines and airport operators, e.g. communication, emergency services
Potential areas for legislation at PoEs (2) • Provisions for contact tracing, quarantine, disinsection, sanitation, cargo areas, medical services • Health documents, e.g. aircraft general declaration and passenger locator card • Emergency re-direction of flights • Fines and fees
WHO guidance material Checklist for Capacities at Points of Entry Detailed, step by step guidance materials on WHO Website A brief introduction to implementation in national legislation Toolkit for implementation in national legislation
International Health regulations (2005) PART II – INFORMATION AND PUBLIC HEALTH RESPONSE Article 5 Surveillance Article 6 Notification Article 7 Information-sharing during unexpected or unusual public health events Article 8 Consultation Article 9 Other reports Article 10 Verification Article 11 Provision of information by WHO Article 12 Determination of a public health emergency of international concern Article 13 Public health response Article 14 Cooperation of WHO with intergovernmental organizations and international bodies WHO shall coordinate these activities with other intergovernmental organizations … (e.g. IMO, ILO, ICAO…)
18 Annexes to the Convention - ‘Standards and Recommended Practices’ SARPs • Governments • Regulatory Aviation Authorities 96 ‘Articles’
ICAO Annex 9 - Facilitation • Health part of aircraft general declaration • Passenger Locator Card
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