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The International Health Regulations

The International Health Regulations (IHR) are an international legal tool. They are legally binding on 196 countries, which are working together on global health security. 

The aim of the IHR is to help the international community avoid serious risks to public health that are likely to spread beyond borders and pose a threat worldwide, by taking appropriate measures.

The International Health Regulations were adopted by the 58th World Health Assembly on 23 May 2005 and were made enforceable in Monaco by Sovereign Ordinance no. 3.153 of 24 February 2011 .

The IHR entail a certain number of obligations for signatories, who must:

  • Designate a National Focal Point (NFP) permanently responsible for ensuring that information is shared with World Health Organization (WHO). In Monaco, the Department of Health and Social Affairs fulfils this role
  • Assess public health events likely to constitute a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) and, depending on the circumstances, notify them to WHO 
  • Respond to WHO requests regarding health events which may pose a risk to public health
  • Develop, strengthen and then maintain national capacities to detect, assess and respond to health events which may pose a risk to public health
  • Strengthen surveillance and response capacities at international ports and airports on a routine basis and in response to events which may constitute a PHEIC
http://en.gouv.mc/Policy-Practice/Social-Affairs-and-Health/An-exemplary-Public-Health-system/The-International-Health-Regulations