A collaborative approach to infectious disease preparedness: The IDRAM initiative

Francesca Viliani, Michael Edelstein, Abbas Omaar, Osman Dar, Emmeline Buckley, Hisham Tariq, Zia Sadique

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

As the Ebola outbreak in West Africa has demonstrated, outbreaks of infectious diseases pose a significant threat to the extractive industry. Extractive companies often operate in emerging infectious disease (EID) 'hotspots'. The nature of extractive projects in these hotspots causes greater interaction between animals and humans which in turn, is thought to create a greater risk of infectious outbreaks. The Infectious Disease Risk Assessment and Management (IDRAM) initiative supports the extractive industry to better understand, assess and mitigate this risk through fostering partnerships between the industry, public health systems and other relevant stakeholders. During 2014 and 2015, IDRAM field tested planning and audit tools among four leading mining companies in the Katanga province, Democratic Republic of Congo; produced a qualitative study to better understand the industry's perception of EID-related risks; and conducted three desktop outbreak simulation exercises involving industry and other stakeholders. An ongoing economic evaluation study will quantify the economic impact of the Ebola outbreak at the company level. This study will focus on a single large mining company that has continued to operate throughout the epidemic. A literature review exploring past and current collaborative efforts between extractive industries and national health systems related to health emergencies is also being carried out. This will provide strong evidence-based best practice for effective partnership. These activities have highlighted that although the industry recognizes a need for collaborative approaches to managing EID risks, its response remains focused " inside the fence" with an emphasis on limiting contact between humans, wildlife and domestic animals and maintaining hygiene standards. As a result, companies are still vulnerable to disease outbreaks, due to a lack of coordination and engagement with stakeholders " outside the fence" . In public health crises such as the recent Ebola outbreak, no single organization has the capacity to deal with global outbreaks on its own. Through future activities, IDRAM will facilitate oil and gas sector's contribution to national preparedness and response capabilities for EIDs and pandemics, thereby contributing to health system strengthening and improving the sustainability and coordination of disease control efforts in countries where the sector is active.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSociety of Petroleum Engineers - SPE International Conference and Exhibition on Health, Safety, Security, Environment, and Social Responsibility
PublisherSociety of Petroleum Engineers
ISBN (Electronic)9781613994436
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016
EventSPE International Conference and Exhibition on Health, Safety, Security, Environment, and Social Responsibility 2016 - Stavanger, Norway
Duration: 11 Apr 201613 Apr 2016

Publication series

NameSociety of Petroleum Engineers - SPE International Conference and Exhibition on Health, Safety, Security, Environment, and Social Responsibility

Conference

ConferenceSPE International Conference and Exhibition on Health, Safety, Security, Environment, and Social Responsibility 2016
Country/TerritoryNorway
CityStavanger
Period11/04/1613/04/16

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