20 July 2023, Vientiane, Lao PDR – UN-Habitat has taken a proactive step in enhancing disaster resilience by initiating a comprehensive training program for trainers on the “National Assessment of Multi-Hazard Risk and Critical Infrastructure under Climate Change and Development and Pilot-Testing of Lao PDR Hospital Safety Index.” This series of workshops aims to build the capacity of government officials across 18 provinces to conduct surveys for risk and vulnerability assessments of health facilities. The surveys will collect data on the frequency of five natural disasters: droughts, floods, landslides, storms, and earthquakes. This extensive survey will cover all districts within the 18 provinces of Lao PDR.
The primary objective of this project is to bolster the resilience of health facilities, including hospitals and health centers, against the impacts of natural disasters and associated risks. To achieve this goal, the project will leverage the methodology previously utilized in a national climate vulnerability assessment, which already included information on hospitals and health centers.
Comprising of three key components, the training program falls under Component 1, which involves conducting a national assessment to understand the spatial extent of multi-hazard risk under the current and future climate in Lao PDR. It seeks to evaluate how these risks impact health facilities and critical infrastructure, such as electricity, water, and transport networks, across the country’s 18 provinces.
This training program marks the first collaborative activity between UN-Habitat and the Ministry of Health at the national and sub-national levels for data collection purposes within Component 1. Through this initiative, UN-Habitat aims to build the capacity of trainers who will oversee activities across 1,233 health facilities in 148 districts within the 18 provinces over a span of six weeks. A solid understanding of the methodology and process at the provincial level is vital to ensuring comprehensive data collection.
By analyzing the collected data, UN-Habitat intends to identify health facilities and infrastructure assets that are at risk, enabling prioritization of risk reduction and emergency preparedness interventions.
This project serves as a technical contribution to a broader initiative titled “Strengthening Health Facility and Lifeline Infrastructure for Health Emergency Preparedness in Lao PDR.” The larger project, funded by a US$33 million loan from the World Bank’s IDA and HERP-Trust Fund, aims to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic while enhancing the preparedness and resilience of healthcare facilities and workers.
The project has 3 components
- A national assessment to understand the spatial extent of multi-hazard risk under the current and future climate in Lao PDR and how they affect health facilities and critical infrastructure such as electricity, water, and transport networks in Lao PDR’s 18 provinces.
- The development and piloting of a national hospital safety assessment based on the Hospital Safety Index.
- Development of Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) and distribution/action plan for the provision of water supply and sanitation in case of health emergency.
General information of the project
- Project Name: National Assessment of Multi-Hazard Risk and Critical Infrastructure under Climate Change and Development and Pilot-Testing of Lao PDR Hospital Safety Index
- Donor: Ministry of Health, the World Bank
- Duration: May to December 2023
- Target areas: All 18 provinces in Lao PDR
- Budget: USD 250,000