Beijing Statement

It has been the policy of the World Association for Disaster and Emergency Medicine to summarize some of the conclusions reached during its World Congresses on Disaster and Emergency Medicince (WCDEMs) and to charge the organization with tasks based on these findings. The title of these statements carry the name of the city where the respective WCDEMs have been convened.

The Beijing Statement is a summary of where the science currently is and provides direction as to what WADEM ought to accomplish between the 17th WCDEM in Beijing and the 18th WCDEM to be convened from 28-31 May 2013 in Manchester, United Kindgom.

Beijing Statement from the 17th WCDEM

Whereas, the frequency and severity of disasters and public health emergencies are increasing worldwide; and

Whereas, health emergency risks associated with urbanization are increasing; and 

Whereas, the disaster-related burdens of injured/ill on health facilities are increasing; and 

Whereas, the physical structure and staffs of many health facilities are highly vulnerable to the forces produced by damaging events; and 

Whereas, much of the world's population does not have ready access to (primary care and emergency) health services; and 

Whereas, most attention has been directed towards relief activities with little attention directed towards recovery and risk reduction; and 

Whereas, a lack of standard terminology interferes with effective professional communications; and 

Whereas, little is known about the impact of responses (interventions) on populations; and 

Whereas, the paucity of information about specific interventions prevents us from learning from our experiences, and when such information is available, it has not been applied, and 

Whereas, reporting of data and information suffers from the lack of standardized frameworks, mechanisms and repositories; and 

Whereas, the lay public plays an essential role in disaster preparedness and response, yet the lay public and the security personnel in most countries have not been educated and trained in life-supporting first aid (LSFA); and

Whereas, the role of the military and its relationships with civilian organizations in disaster-related activities requires further definition; and 

Whereas, the World Association for Disaster and Emergency Medicine (WADEM) is an international, non-operational association focused on academics, evaluations, and research; 

Therefore, be it resolved that the World Association for Disaster and Emergency Medicine (WADEM) will:

Work to promote, support, and contribute to the Safe Hospitals initiatives of the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction and the World Health Organization and other stakeholders to increase the absorbing, buffering and response capacities of medical facilities; 

Develop, promote and support the development of standards and best practices; 

Assist in the development of EMS Systems and the integration of EMS Systems into the respective health networks;

Develop and seek consensus on a standard terminology and reporting frameworks; 

Encourage the education and training of preparedness measures such as Life-supporting first aid (LSFA) at all levels; 

Assist in identification and codification of the roles of the military in disasters and foster civil-military collaboration; 

Focus attention on the development and implementation of best practices and minimum core competencies; 

Encourage further emphasis on proactive approaches to disaster risk reduction and planning and implementation of recovery measures; 

Focus attention on the development and implementation of standardized methods for evaluation of specific interventions; and 

Assist in the development and promotion of linked repositories for data and information related to public health and medical care.