Support for IHR implementation in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia


Better alignment of national action plans with the International Health Regulations (IHR 2005) was the subject of a meeting on 28 January 2015 organized by the WHO Country Office in cooperation with the Ministry of Health of the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. Representatives of the Ministry of Health and governmental committees on IHR met to analyse and discuss progress and to confirm lines of responsibilities and communication within the country as well as with WHO/Europe. 

WHO/Europe experts provided an overview of the current situation in the WHO European Region, the event management cycle within the IHR Framework as well as functions of national IHR focal points, emphasizing the key IHR-related aspects to be communicated between the national levels and WHO. 

Participants emphasized the need for consistent implementation of the IHR (2005) national action plan and discussed ways to overcome the gaps in IHR-related communication channels at national level. “The process of building and sustaining surveillance and response capacities for IHR implementation needs to continue in 2015, and we are grateful to WHO for its continuous support,” said Dr Jovanka Kostovska, Head of the Preventive Health Care Sector and Ministry of Health National Counterpart with WHO for technical issues. 

Looking forward

Outcomes of the discussions included agreement that priority in-country actions for better alignment with IHR will be presented to the Government and lines of communication for notification of IHR-related events will be revised to comply with the IHR 2005 requirements. 

WHO will continue to provide technical support and guidance related to the remaining key challenges, including extensive use of existing resources and capacities in the country and implementation of the national plan for IHR implementation, with clearly established entry points, communication channels, protocols and standard operational procedures.