​​Integrated Disaster Response Programme

The "Integrated Disaster Response" initiative, led by the Centre in collaboration with various departments within the Aga Khan University, is dedicated to enhancing the capabilities of healthcare personnel operating in disaster-prone regions. This comprehensive five-day training program encompasses six distinct specialties:

Our primary objective is to equip healthcare workers with the necessary knowledge and skills to effectively respond to both natural and man-made disasters, ensuring optimal patient outcomes.

The programme, initially focused on the first critical four weeks post-disaster, has made significant strides. In the initial phase, we have selected and trained 10 master trainers each from the districts of Dadu and Sanghar, who are currently conducting training sessions alongside AKU faculty. 

In the roll-out phase, as of February 2024, we have conducted four sessions in Sanghar, training a total of 120 healthcare workers out of the targeted 400.

We maintain close coordination with the DG Office, which facilitates these training sessions. Faculty members from AKU periodically monitor and evaluate the progress of the programme to ensure quality assurance.​

Disaster First Responder Course for Lady Healthcare Workers

The "Disaster First Responder Course for Lady Healthcare Workers" is a crucial initiative aimed at empowering Pakistani Lady Health Workers (LHWs) to effectively respond to disasters in their communities. These LHWs play a vital role in providing health information services to community members each, covering a wide range of health education and disease management topics. While primarily based in their communities, they serve as a vital link between formal health systems and local populations.

Over the last couple of years, the scope of services provided by LHWs has expanded to include participation in various health campaigns, community management of diseases like tuberculosis, and education on HIV/AIDS. LHWs visit households within their community on a weekly basis, conducting consultations and providing essential advice.

This project's goal is to train 2,500 Lady Healthcare Workers in Sanghar and Dadu districts, regions prone to floods, over the next two years. Progress has been made with the completion of pilot sessions and training for Lady Healthcare Supervisors. Now, the focus shifts to directly training LHWs, enhancing their capacity to respond swiftly during crises.

Currently, Sanghar has 1,200 LHWs and 40 Lady Health Supervisors, with supervisors already trained in the first phase. Stage 2 will commence, aiming to train the remaining 1,200 LHWs within six months. The curriculum emphasizes precautionary and preventive measures for dealing with natural disasters, leveraging the influence and leadership of LHWs within their communities. 

Disaster Leadership Course

The "Disaster Leadership Course" project aims to develop resilient leaders capable of guiding communities through crises. This This longitudinal capacity-building training programme, set to launch in April 2024, focuses on enhancing disaster planning and response skills within the AKU/AKDN network.

Key objectives include providing AKDN leadership with skills in disaster management, covering topics such as understanding different types of disasters, disaster preparedness, response techniques, leadership decision-making, communication, psychological support, and legal and ethical considerations. The target audience comprises emergency managers and clinical nursing leaders, with a one-year hybrid teaching model planned.​

The course covers (but is not limited to) the following topic areas:

  • Intro to Disaster Management and Humanitarian Relief
  • Public Health Response in Large-Scale Disasters
  • Facility-based preparedness and plans​​