Lessons to be learned for the next massive sudden-onset disaster

The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO/WHO), present in the response to the earthquake of 12 January 2010 in Haiti and aware about the difficulties met, made an analytical exercise to review the response operation and to extract conclusions that will allow the reduction of mistakes in the future. This meticulous work of investigation has resulted in the publication Health response to the earthquake in Haiti, based on interviews with different Haitian actors and members of the humanitarian community, as well as on the review of diverse reports, evaluations, studies and scientific literature.

The aim of this publication is to present the lessons to be learned of Haiti to improve the response of the health sector to disasters of great magnitude.

Health response to the earthquake in Haiti is directed to those actors involved in the response to disasters of great magnitude, both in the sector health as in other areas of the response, allowing them to extract important lessons for their work from the analysis presented in the publication. 

The document is available for download, in English and French, from the website of PAHO’s Area on Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Relief: www.paho.org/disasters/earthquakehaiti2010.

The publication also has a series of summaries in Spanish, in English and in French that can also be downloaded from this website.