Young Leaders for Health e.V.
non-profit organisation | gemeinnütziger Verein | Berlin, Germany
IBAN: DE33 8306 5408 0004 8767 09 | 
BIC: GENODEF1SLR

YLH CONFERENCE 

August 20-23, 2015 Berlin, Germany

Disaster And Risk Management -

Towards a global commitment for a better response

Photo credit: liberia-foya-MSB13267-c-martin-zinggl

With the friendly support of 

The Ebola crisis has undoubtedly been the major global concern of 2014. Despite of having a better understanding of diseases through the scientific progress made over the last decades as well as the millennium development goals, the international effort to effectively control epidemics has been “insufficient”. 

 

Although critical requirements for a successful emergency response have been established through the International Health Regulations, the Ebola outbreak has not been contained to this day.

The lack of capacities concerning preparedness, surveillance and response on country-level, internationally as well as the World Health Organisation’s readiness were imperfect in order to face the emergency.When on 24.06.2014 Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) announced that the outbreak was “out of control”, it was not before 31.07.2014 that WHO launched its joint response plan. The continuous lack of resources made the intervention almost impossible to succeed and led MSF to the unusual plea for military deployment.

In January 2015, the World Health Organization finally declared the decline of case incidence. The focus has now shifted to ending the epidemic. However, the epidemic will not be over until the last patient is cured. 

 

The consequences of the crisis reach far beyond the damages measured by case numbers. The World Food Programme estimates that over a million people will face food insecurity and financial hardship during the coming months, but it will take years to fully observe the total socio-economic impact.

 

The crisis raises a lot of questions.

  • What should the role of the WHO be when facing global health emergencies? (With its current resources its mandate seems somewhat questionable.

  • Do we need a new global fund for disasters?

  • Does the spreading of epidemics in a globalised world call for new measures?

  • How can we strengthen health systems in fragile states and increase their preparedness?

  • Given the multiple interdependencies evolving from disasters – do we need a more comprehensive management approach?

 

As Dr. Margaret Chan, Director-General of the WHO, said during a special session of the Executive Board on Ebola on 25.01.2015: “The Ebola outbreak revealed some inadequacies and shortcomings in this Organization’s administrative, managerial, and technical infrastructures.” A substantial debate on sustainable solutions is needed for improvement.

 

Being a non-governmental global health initiative, we neither follow any political agenda nor do we particularly support or promote a certain point of view. We ensure neutrality, and give all institutions the opportunity to present their standpoint and answer our questions. 

 

Grasp the opportunity to meet experts directly involved in previous and current humanitarian crises in a series of interdisciplinary workshops, understand the actions and limitations of different global actors, analyse the social, economic and political impact of such emergencies, and rethink the global response to disaster and risk management with your fellow participants in the simulation of the World Health Assembly.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The global response to health emergencies

 

In order to gain a deeper understanding of the Ebola response and the structures it is embedded in, there will be an educational program. This consists of four different clusters, which will be presented through a series of lectures and workshops held by representatives of different global health actors.

 

Global Health Structure:

Global Health as defined by Ilona Kickbusch encompasses three main characteristics: The nature of the issue can be described as a global one; there is an importance of transborder determinants; global governance actions are required. Regarding this definition, the structures shaping and influencing global health are numerous. This year’s program will focus on governance issues and the two most important actors: the WHO and the World Bank.

 

Humanitarian Action:

“The objectives of humanitarian action are to save lives, alleviate suffering and maintain human dignity during and in the aftermath of man-made crises and natural disasters [...].”(Good Humantitarian Donorship Initiative)

In contrast to the long-term development assistance it is usually of short-term. Participants will have the opportunity to learn about norms, standards and the difficulties the circumstances of humanitarian actions entail.

 

Disaster and Risk Management:

“A serious disruption of the functioning of a community or a society involving widespread human, material, economic or environmental losses and impacts, which exceeds the ability of the affected community or society to cope using its own resources.”(UNISDR)

How does one coordinate the given resources in a systematic manner by using administrative directives and standard procedures? This will be discussed through the exchange of personal fieldwork experiences.

 

Preparedness and Prevention:

Preparedness is a term used to describe the capacities to effectively respond to and recover from disasters. Prevention is the outright avoidance of adverse impacts.

In order to achieve this, it is necessary to anticipate potential or impending hazards. We will give answers to questions linked to potential global health risks of the 21st century and how these can be assessed. 

 

Each participant can only partake in a fraction of the offered workshops. We want to encourage you to use and exchange your newly learned skills and gained information as well as your precognitions in the negotiation process so that your knowledge at large  became manifest.

The Speakers

Keynote Lectures

Ilona Kickbusch

Director

Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies

Member of the Ebola Interim Assessment Panel commissioned by the WHO (click to see CV)

Virginia Murray

Vice-chair UNISDR Scientific and Technical Advisory Group

United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction

Title: Sendai Framework: Public Health Impacts

Paolo Costa

Consultant within the Core Team for Ebola Virus Disease Preparedness

World Health Organization

Title: Ebola Virus Disease Preparedness

Dheepa Rajan

Technical Officer

World Health Organization

Title: Strengthening Health Systems

Workshops

Ebola Outbreak tackled by the Red Cross – from Geneva’s desks to Western Africa’s dust with the IFRC

Isabel Diener

International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies

Global Mental Health in Conflict and Fragile Settings

Samhita Kumar

World Bank Group

Civil-Military Interaction in Complex Emergencies

Hans-Jürgen Kasselmann

NATO Civil Military Cooperation Center of Excellence (CIMIC)

Health Emergency Communications - mapping exercise

Flora Haderer

Ministry of Health Austria

An Introduction to Global Reforms and Challenges in Humanitarian Action

András Derzsi-Horváth

Global Public Policy Institute

Global Health Governance

André Isidro

Technische Universität Dresden

Global Health – Phar more a game? A call for Access2Medicines!

Max Schmidt, Nadja Kutschke

Universities Allied for Essential Medicines (UAEM)

Fieldwork during the Ebola crisis

Simon Scheiblhuber, Till Eckert, Nicolas Aschoff

L'Appel Deutschland e.V.

Climate Change and Health in Vulnerable States

Katelin Childers

Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research

On site. What does it mean to work for MSF? 

Christian Kleine

Médecins Sans Frontières

Infectious diseases as a narrative of Global Health policy

Anna Holzscheiter

Freie Universität Berlin

Tackling Global Biosecurity with a comprehensive approach: The example of the German Biosecurity Program

Michael Summerer

giz - Deutsche Gesellschaft für international Zusammenarbeit

R&D ethics in epidemics and public health emergencies

Felicitas Holzer

Universidad de Buenos Aires

Instant and interactive communication simulation

Caity Jackson

This Week in Global Health (TWiGH)

Publishing in Global Health - What are my choices?

Camila González Beiras, Simone Mohrs

Global Health Next Generation Network

Disaster Medicine

Andre Lieber

Bundeswehrkrankenhaus Berlin

Workshop Session 1

August 21st | 16:30-18:00

Michael Summerer

Security Sector Advisor

giz - Deutsche Gesellschaft für international Zusammenarbeit

Tackling Global Biosecurity with a comprehensive approach: The example of the German Biosecurity Program

In our globalized world people and goods travel far and fast. But so do dangerous biological agents and diseases – be they naturally occurring, unintentionally released of deliberately misused. The Ebola outbreak in West Africa dramatically shows the possible consequences of this development. We must be better prepared to tackle biological risks. Our answers to these global challenges must be preventive, international and inter-sectoral. The German Partnership Program for Excellence in Biological and Health Security addresses ... (click to see more)

Anna Holzscheiter

Junior professor for international relations

Freie Universität Berlin

Infectious diseases as a narrative of Global Health policy

The attention allocated to dealing with infectious diseases internationally has a long tradition. Perceiving pandemics as a threat to national security puts their proper management in every states own interest and the prevention of a spreading epidemic seems to benefit everyone. But what if the conceptions and notions coexisting and underlying the story of the epidemic actually prevent the initiation of a global health agenda really changing something for the better? What if colonial mindsets, bio-medical approaches or a view through the bio-security lens form a narrative that leads exactly to the opposite? Constructivism is a way of seeing the world not as objectively given but as socially constructed and perceived. Understanding these constructions means being able to change them.

Hans-Jürgen Kasselmann

Former Director of the CIMIC Centre of Excellence

NATO Civil Military Cooperation Center of Excellence (CIMIC)

Civil-Military Interaction in Complex Emergencies

Responding to complex emergencies, whether they stem from political, humanitarian, technological or natural causes, the International Community identifies that effective and sustainable solutions require a change of effort and conduct by all actors involved. Consequently, international efforts are increasingly about integrating approaches of civilian and military actors, and state and non-state actors such as International Organisations and Non-Governmental Organisations. This Workshop addresses the issue of Civil-Military Interaction from a military perspective... (click to see more)

Caity Jackson

Director of Communications and Creative Development

This Week in Global Health (TWiGH)

Instant and interactive communication simulation

In times of health emergencies, time is essential; you must get as much correct information out to the right sources as humanly possible. Social media and visual communication are growing into incredible tools for immediate and interactive dissemination of information to a global audience. Using TWiGH as a case study, we will examine the technique behind preparing for a TWiGH show and the advantage of covering a subject instantaneously. Students will then simulate a TWiGH-like show given prepared industry-specific angles to a health emergency simulated situation.

Andre Lieber

Assistant medical director in the surgery department

Bundeswehrkrankenhaus Berlin

Disaster Medicine

Disaster medicine is more than providing health care to survivors. It means managing emergencies. By definition a disaster is an incident which exceeds the ability to cope using the given resources. In order to still give relief the adequate coordination is crucial. What the difficulties in this situation are and how to approach them will be the focus of this workshop.

Simon Scheiblhuber, Till Eckert, Nicolas Aschoff

L'Appel Deutschland e.V.

Fieldwork during the Ebola crisis

Ebola was a major issue last year. Every day there were new horror stories about new infection- and death rates of the disease. Suddenly it got silent around Ebola - but only in the media. Ebola is not over and the consequences of the crisis are diverse. Three members of L'appel Deutschland e.V. - medical students of the University of Witten/Herdecke helped in Sierra Leone to fight Ebola. Now they attend to the various problems the disease caused in the country.

 

 

 

Workshop Session 2

August 22nd | 14:30 - 16:00

Isabel Diener

Medical student, IFRC delegate in Ebola Response

International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies

Ebola Outbreak tackled by the Red Cross – from Geneva’s desks to Western Africa’s dust with the IFRC

The recent Ebola outbreak has challenged governments, NGOs and global players in public health equally. The International Red Cross and Red Crescent (RCRC) Movement provides help and preventive measures for people suffering from natural disasters and health crises through the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC). From a primary risk assessment...(click to see more)

Katelin Childers

Postdoctoral researcher

Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research

Climate Change and Health in Vulnerable States

Long term changes in the global climate are expected to impact human health in a variety of ways from heat stress to food availability. Regions with limited financial and organizational capacities will be left exposed to reorganizations of harvestable lands, increasing extreme weather events, and growing clean energy demands. Using state-of-the-art impact models we can project the influence of climate on crop yields and identify vulnerable states and regions where a reduction of crop harvests or a decrease in their nutritional content are likely to occur. But what are the best outlets for this information? And what steps should be taken to prepare for such losses? By sharing the climate impacts knowledge which is currently available and gaining feedback about what kind of information is most useful to the public health community, we can help to prepare for and mitigate future crises.

Flora Haderer

Project and international coordination

Ministry of Health Austria

Health Emergency Communications - mapping exercise

Collaboration and communication between all partners involved is essential for effective emergency response. But the sheer number of actors and their different mandates makes coordinating communications activities extremely complex. Using the Ebola outbreak as example we will identify relevant stakeholders, discuss communication streams and design a health emergency communications plan.

André Isidro

Research assistant and PhD candidate

Technische Universität Dresden

Global Health Governance

The workshop will offer a brief overview over the main actors, institutions and ideas that shape the development of global health governance over the last decades. We will look at how the constellation of actors’ interests and interactions, the interplay between different forms of collective coordination/governance, and the public contestation around ideas (discourses, arguments and evidence) leads to changes in the international cooperation in global health. Within this framework we will then adopt the view from the World Health Organization (WHO) and actively discuss if and how we should/can adapt the WHO to make it fit for managing the challenges of global health governance.

Max Schmidt, Nadja Kutschke

Medical Students

Universities Allied for Essential Medicines (UAEM)

Global Health – Phar more a game? A call for Access2Medicines!

This workshop will provide an overview of urgent global health needs and western worlds scientific and industrial distributions. Together with you we will have a look at uncoordinated fiscal driven R&D strategies (research & development) and their current failures as well as what happens if public fund’s fruits are transferred to Big Pharma and not available for the public afterwards. “Make medicines for people, not for profits”, and a call for a global R&D treaty – these are our messages UAEM advocates with. We hopefully will give you a detailed view of chances western worlds societies should take to minimize the global burden of disease.

Workshop Session 3

August 22nd | 16:30 - 18:00

András Derzsi-Horváth

Research associate

Global Public Policy Institute

An Introduction to Global Reforms and Challenges in Humanitarian Action

This workshop explores the evolution and current challenges of humanitarian action. Specifically, the workshop will familiarize participants with global reform processes such as the Transformative Agenda of 2011 and outline areas where progress has so far been limited. These include coordination, staff capacity, linking to development and accountability to affected populations. In discussing current trends, participants will be invited to debate the role of non-Western actors, the use of cash and vouchers and technology in humanitarian action.

Samhita Kumar

Consultant

World Bank Group

Global Mental Health in Conflict and Fragile Settings

There is immense importance in addressing global mental health, particularly in fragile and conflict-affected settings. In a discussion on disaster preparedness and response, we hear very little about psychosocial well-being, especially in the case of the Ebola outbreak in West Africa. How can trauma and poor mental health impact the way that health systems deliver preparedness and response programs? Can weak institutions and fragile countries deliver necessary aid or respond to the needs of their people? Can individuals with varying levels of psychological trauma access and persist meaningfully in the aid programs available to them? What is the impact of disaster (natural, disease-related, or conflict-related) on health, well-being, and productivity and what can we do about it? This workshop will briefly touch upon relevant discourse but will be centered on a discussion on the challenges and opportunities of addressing global mental health in fragile settings.

Camila González Beiras, Simone Mohrs

Global Health Next Generation Network

Publishing in Global Health - What are my choices?

This interactive workshop “Publishing in Global Health – What are my choices” entails a presentation and discussion about open / restricted access (OA / RA) journals based on two articles, one about each access type... (click to see more)

Felicitas Holzer

MSc Student

Universidad de Buenos Aires

R&D ethics in epidemics and public health emergencies

Responses to epidemics, emergencies and disasters raise many ethical issues for the people involved, who include responders, public health specialists and policy-makers. This workshop provides an ethical view point on issues arising when research studies are conducted in these difficult contexts. In particular, it will be focused on adaptations of ethical oversight and processes, as deliberations of research ethics committees. Using the example of the recent Ebola outbreak in West Africa, the participants of the workshop will discuss ethical issues within a concrete case study.

The Simulation

 
 

World Health Assembly Simulation

With the WHA Simulation we want you to participate actively in the field of Global Health. While representing a country, you will be able to get an impression of the different countries’ preferences concerning global health as well as the negotiations going on between them. Moreover, you will get the chance to shape the future of global health, to set new goals and to get an extensive insight into financial policies and the creation of a budget.

 

For more information check: http://www.who.int/mediacentre/events/2014/wha67/how_wha_works/en/

Writing a Resolution

Similar to the United Nations Assembly, the outcome of the simulation should be a resolution on the discussed topic. This resolution is important in the sense that it highlights and summarizes the results, which we have concluded with. Furthermore, we will then present our resolution to major global players, such as the World Health Organization and the World Health Summit.

 

Schedule

2015 Conference Resources

Final Resolution

 

This final resolution came into being as a result of the participants of the 2015 YLH conference working together for four days to draft, amend, perfect, submit and finally vote upon a single, proposed solution for strengthening the international community's response to global threats.

 

Keep in mind that this was for an exercise - it is not an official document or statement.

 

Click on the image above to download a PDF.

Information Packet

 

All of the essential information for the participants of the 2015 YLH conference - schedule, workshop list, etc. - are detailed in this information packet.

 

Click on the image above to download a PDF.

Schedule

FAQ

Why and when was YLH founded?

Our goal is to create a network of people from different backgrounds able to discuss and tackle current health issues. Moreover, we want young people to debate about ways of achieving a sustainable, equitable and healthy development across the world.

Young Leaders for Health was founded in 2014.

 

Do I have to study medicine/ have medical knowledge to participate in the conference?

Medical knowledge is absolutely not a requirement. Being an interdisciplinary team, we welcome all different fields of expertise to apply for the conference.  Nonetheless, it will be useful to read through the material and links provided in order to be able to actively participate in discussions and gain basic knowledge about the subject of the conference. Being interested in the discussed topic is the most important aspect.

 

How much is the participation fee?

70 €

 

Is travel support and housing included in the participation fee?

Unfortunately it is not; we can neither provide travel support nor housing. We will however help you to find good and cheap housing opportunities.

 

Are there application fees?  

There are no application fees, you are only requested to transfer the attendance fee of 70 € once your participation has been confirmed.

 

What is to be expected of this year's YLH Conference?

A very inspiring experience with other motivated students and professionals from across the globe besides a thorough introduction to disaster and risk management. Moreover, presentations and workshops will be held by speakers who are experts in their line of work; you will also get the chance to personally meet them as well as getting the chance to get in touch with young professionals involved in different Global Health agencies. In addition, you will receive a certificate of participation at the Young Leaders for Health Conference 2015.

 

When will I know if I am accepted?

Latest by May 30th, 2015.

 

Where will the YLH- Conference take place?

The YLH-Conference will take place from 20.08.2015 to 23.08.2015 at the Forum III at the Campus Virchow Klinikum, Augustenburger Platz 1, 13353 Berlin.