Disaster management - Resources

The following resources will be individually detailed below:

WCPT resources


WCPT Congress learning materials

Articles in WCPT News

Disaster prevention resources

Disaster preparedness resources

Disaster relief resources

The following volunteer databases are important in disaster relief:

The following are involved in helping children in emergency situations:

  • A new edition of 'Facts for Life' has been published jointly by UNICEF and WHO in collaboration with other UN agencies and the World Bank. This delivers essential information on how to prevent child and maternal deaths, diseases, injuries and violence and is designed to educate those who have influence over the safety and wellbeing of children.
  • The International Foster Care Organisation has produced guiding principles on the care and protection of unaccompanied and separated children in emergency-affected countries. First developed in response to the tsunami in Asia in 2004, they have been updated in 2010 for the situation in Haiti following the earthquake. The document represents the views of the following agencies: the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), the International Rescue Committee (IRC), Save the Children UK (SCUK), the United Nations Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF), the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), and World Vision International (WVI).

The WHO has published Guidelines for health care equipment donations. These guidelines are not specifically for use in disaster response situations and indeed note that ‘The general rule of thumb is that capital equipment should not be donated in emergency situations, unless it is established that the emergency will be continued over a long period.’ The donation process, flowcharts and  checklists may be applicable across many settings and situations, but involvement of the recipient in decision making is paramount. The guidelines emphasise:

  • There should be no double standard on quality. If the quality of an item is unacceptable in the donor country it is also unacceptable as a donation.
  • All donations should be made according to a plan formulated jointly by both donor and recipient.
  • The recipient should derive the maximum possible benefit from the equipment.
  • Equipment should be given in accordance with the recipient’s wishes.
  • Equipment should be given in conformity with government policies and administrative arrangements of the recipient’s country.

Resources on disaster recovery

The following resources are aimed at recovery planning:

  • The UN development group together with the World Bank has published a range of documents on post conflict needs assessment. The purpose of the Guidance is to inform strategic decision-makers (national and international) of the purpose, scope and benefits of a common platform for recovery planning.

The following resources are aimed at community development:

  • Making it work (March 2009) is an international multi-stakeholder initiative aimed towards effective implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). The manual is available in English, French and Spanish.
  • The UN Development Group Toolkit is a repository of guidance, lessons learned and tools to support development.

The following resources are aimed at mainstreaming disability:

The following resources are aimed at recruiting rehabilitation volunteers:

  • Voluntary Service Overseas is a UK based non-governmental organisation that recruits volunteer physical therapists to take part in recovery and development programmes in low-income countries.

The following resources are aimed at pandemic disasters and communicable disease control:

Information sources

The following sources may also provide needed information for those in disaster management:

  • Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy (JOSPT) editorial: The Role of Physical Therapists in the Medical Response Team Following a Natural Disaster: Our Experience in Nepal
  • Health Care in Danger project: new e-learning module (November 2014). The module introduces health personnel to the principles underpinning ethical considerations when working in conflict situations and other emergencies. Using a multimedia interface, the module presents various dilemmas that health personnel face every day. Users can explore these issues in depth by interacting virtually with experts in the field, studying real-life issues, and receiving guidance that helps them to make decisions in difficult situations. 
  • The Community Tool Box is a global resource for free information on essential skills for building healthy communities.  Promoting community health and development by connecting people, ideas and resources.  This resource is also available in Spanish: Caja de Herramientas Comunitarias - Recursos prácticos
  • ReliefWeb, administered by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), is an on-line gateway to information (documents and maps) on humanitarian emergencies and disasters. Designed specifically to assist the international humanitarian community in effective delivery of emergency assistance, it provides information as events unfold, while emphasising the coverage of "forgotten emergencies".
  • Source is an international information support centre designed to strengthen the management, use and impact of information on health and disability. Source has a unique collection of around 25,000 health and disability information resources. These include books, journals, manuals, reports, posters, CD-ROMs, websites and organisations. Many materials are from developing countries.
  • The United States National Library of Medicine (NLM) has developed a listserve for libraries and public health workforce that facilitates the sharing of information on disaster preparedness topics. It also provides archives from previous discussions.
  • Knowledge for Health has gathered key resources from a range of UN agencies into one place. The Haiti Relief Toolkit, though specifically developed in response to the earthquake in Haiti in February 2010, contains information of more general relevance. It contains technical and practical information that will help health workers respond to earthquake relief efforts, covering the vital sectors in emergencies - health, water, sanitation, food, security and shelter - and key field activities supporting the operations, such as logistics.
  • A selection of systematic reviews and their conclusions is available from the Cochrane Library on Healthcare topics that aid agencies have reported as important. These are signposts to reviews that might be helpful to decision-makers. All countries in Latin America and the Caribbean can access the Cochrane Library for free via the Virtual Health Library (in English, Spanish or Portuguese).