Survey of the Municipalities’ Emergency Planning in the Area of Control of Communicable Diseases, per June 2003
Summary of Report of the Norwegian Board of Health Supervision 7/2003
As part of supervision of municipal health services in 2003, the Norwegian Board of Health gave priority to the area of control of communicable diseases. The Norwegian Board of Health needed to obtain a nationwide overview of emergency planning for control of communicable diseases for all the municipalities in the country and for the health authorities. This report presents the results of this work. The development of the SARS epidemic in the spring of 2003 highlighted the importance of emergency planning for control of communicable diseases, and was the impetus for this work being carried out. The survey of the municipalities was carried out in May/June 2003 by the market research company TNS Gallup, under the commission of the Norwegian Board of Health.
The report consists of two parts. In Part I the main requirements for emergency planning for control of communicable diseases and the requirements for plans in the fields of control of communicable diseases and emergency planning for the municipalities and the health authorities are presented. The background for the survey and the Norwegian Board of Health’s evaluation and follow-up of the main results are also presented. Part II contains TNS Gallup’s report of the survey of the municipalities.
The survey showed that over two-thirds of the municipalities reported that they had a plan for control of communicable diseases. One-third of the municipalities lacked routines for up-dating their plans. More than half of the municipalities reported that they did not have a plan for dealing with health and social emergencies. Nine out of ten municipalities had appointed a public medical officer with responsibility for control of communicable diseases, but only one-quarter had appointed a deputy for him or her. At the time of the survey, one of the five health authorities had an approved plan for control of communicable diseases. The other four health authorities planned to have their plans ready by the end of 2003 or the beginning of 2004. Follow-up of the results of the survey in the municipalities will be carried out by the Norwegian Board of Health in the counties.