OAS presents a compendium on strategies, tools, and actions implemented by emergency and security services to address the COVID-19 pandemic

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WASHINGTON, USA – The Organization of American States (OAS) presents the Compendium of Strategies, Tools and Actions Implemented by the Emergency and Security Services to address the COVID-19 pandemic. The compendium presents a regional overview of the strategies, tools, and actions implemented by emergency and security services of the region that have proven effective in facing COVID-19. They were classified and organized into five categories:

1. Technology
2. Operations
3. Information and Statistics
4. Human resources
5. Communication

This Compendium was prepared by the Subsidiary Technical Working Group on Emergency and Security Systems (STG-ESS), which is currently chaired by Ecuador’s ECU-911 Integrated Security Service (SIS ECU-911, for its Spanish acronym), and the Department of Public Security of the Organization of American States (DPS/OAS), as technical secretariat of the STG-ESS.

The Compendium’s objectives are to:

  • Understand the different experiences of adaptation and innovation implemented by emergency and security services (or similar agencies) in the region in facing the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Encourage peer-to-peer learning from different experiences, drawing lessons and recommendations from their achievements and shortcomings.
  • Avoid the repetition of formulas, recipes or procedures that have proven to be ineffective.
  • Introduce the necessary changes, based on successful experiences, adapted to the circumstances and conditions of each institution, to face future crises.
  • Create useful knowledge for all those working in emergency assistance and response.

The systematization of the strategies, tools and actions implemented by emergency and security services (or similar agencies) in the region to face COVID-19, has also been captured in a Map of COVID-19 Experiences available through the ESS-Community.

This hemispheric systematization exercise began during the first meeting of the STG-ESS, held on May 6 and 7, 2021. SIS ECU-911 of Ecuador and the 911 National Emergency Systems of Honduras, Panama, and Paraguay shared their experiences of adaptation, learning, and innovation to tackle the problems caused by the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Subsequently, following up on the recommendations that resulted from the STG-ESS first meeting, SIS ECU-911, as chair of the Group, with the support from the Department of Public Security, organized the First Discussion on Effective Strategies, Tools, and Actions Implemented by Emergency and Security Services (or similar agencies) in the region to face the COVID-19 pandemic.

This first discussion featured interventions by SIS ECU-911, the 9-1-1 Emergency System of Costa Rica, the National Emergency Service of Honduras, the National Information Center of Mexico, the National 9-1-1 Emergency System and SUME of Panama, the National Emergency Number Association (NENA) and Mission Critical Partners (MCP) of the United States. In addition, the answers to a questionnaire circulated by the OAS Department of Public Security among member states and their respective emergency services or similar agencies were also used as inputs for the Compendium.

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