The pratical implementation of the ICRC Health Care in Danger Strategy: The HCID Regional Meetings
The International Committee of the Red Cross Health Care in Danger Strategy
The current strategy emphasizes the practical implementation and operationalization of concrete measures at the local and national level. In alignment with the strategic orientations, the Health care in Danger Initiative has transitioned from holding annual meetings of global stakeholders to bi-annual regional ones. The regional focus (of which for the ICRC there are five) provides a forum that allows stakeholders to share experiences on approaches and develop and reinforce local and national partnerships to prevent and address violence against health care.
The partnership with the Global Community of Concern, a global network of health care providers promoting the protection of health care nationally and globally is a central pillar of advancing this common agenda. The partnership with the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement is also critical to the continued and long-term success of this work. The current ICRC strategy for Health Care in Danger 2020-22 is available here.
Regional meetings were held in 2019 in the Asia-Pacific Region in Manila, and the Near and Middle East Region in Beirut. Participants appreciated the opportunity to share experiences, dynamics and cultural issues with stakeholders from neighboring countries.
Due to COVID19 related restrictions the face-to-face meeting planned for the Africa Region was transformed into a successful virtual meeting in June 2020 and the same was the case with the Eurasia Region in February 2021.
More Regional Health Care in Danger meetings are planned for 2021, the Asia-Pacific, the Near and Middle East and the Americas.
The Health Care in Danger Initiative is focused on reducing violence and mitigating the effects of violence in zones of conflict and other emergencies. Many International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement partners are working on the protection of health care in the region, including in awareness raising, national implementation and advocacy and many organizations outside the Movement are carrying out diverse activities as well.
The protection of health care is universally relevant, and the ICRC seeks to advance a common agenda and facilitate regional and global partnerships including two-way collaboration and exchanges of experiences.
Tools and approaches developed to prevent violence and mitigate in one context can be inspiration and facilitate learning and adaptation in another.
The COVID19 pandemic has further demonstrated the durability and importance of the central tenet of Health Care in Danger – the inviolability of health care – and the cascading negative consequences of its non-respect. There is scope and, in light of the novel situation, a need to exchange on recent experiences working to protect health care from violence, including during the pandemic, review promising practices and reinforce national, regional and global partnerships.
The exchange of experiences will also contribute to implement Resolution 3:
“Time to act: Tackling epidemics and pandemics together” of the 33rd International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent (2019)
which invites States to enable and facilitate Movement components to contribute to a predictable and coordinated approach to epidemics and pandemics and recalls the obligations to respect and protect the wounded and sick, health care personnel and facilities in these contexts in accordance with the applicable legal framework.
Regional meetings in 2021:
The Asia-Pacific Health Care in Danger 2021 Meeting
The last meeting has placed an emphasis on championing diverse regional voices in order that they could share their perspectives on the current challenges and steps being taken to overcome violence and attacks on health care. It did over four days provide a venue for the sharing of experiences, good practices and recommendations on safeguarding health care through presentations and interactions. The meeting promoted practical action, research, influencing and resource mobilization for the protection of health care.