READY posts updates here—news, announcements, and other updates on the initiative.
The purpose of the “Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights during Infectious Disease Outbreaks: Operational Guidance for Humanitarian and Fragile Settings” is to provide practical advice for health staff undertaking infectious disease preparedness and response activities to ensure that the sexual and reproductive (SRH) needs of the population are met when an outbreak occurs. It is designed to be an operational guide to support health actors to maintain critical SRH services during infectious disease outbreaks and ensure necessary SRH considerations are integrated within the outbreak response; it is not a clinical guide.
The guidance was developed by the READY initiative and the International Rescue Committee (IRC), with funding from the David and Lucile Packard Foundation.
The guidance is divided into four sections. Section one explores the effects of infectious disease outbreaks on SRH. Section two looks at cross-cutting considerations, such as the importance of coordination, and section three examines ways to maintain the safety and continuity of essential SRH services before and during infectious disease outbreaks. Section four explores ways to integrate SRH needs within infectious disease outbreak preparedness and responses. Finally, the guidance includes two annexes; annex one is a preparedness and response checklist to aid programming and annex two includes additional tools and resources.
In 2021, the World Health Organization published a report detailing the evidence gaps and research priorities around community-centered approaches to health emergencies. In response, the READY initiative carried out a systematic review and narrative synthesis of the evidence describing the drivers of success of community-based surveillance systems.
The Protection in Outbreaks (PiO) resource package is part of the Integrated Health and Protection Outbreak Response toolkit, and aims to equip frontline protection and health service providers with tools and guidance on how to mitigate protection risks, respond to protection needs, and ensure inclusion of marginalized groups in outbreak responses. As an active member of the PiO Steering Committee, READY played a key role in the development of the PIO Outbreaks Resource Package through providing input at the design stage, in reviewing various iterations and supporting final dissemination. Technical input was provided from READY’s GBV, MHPSS, RCCE and Child Protection leads.
The resources are organized across three modes of transmission — bloodborne or body-fluid borne, respiratory, and waterborne, with a particular focus on Ebola Virus Disease (EVD), COVID-19 and Cholera. They are now available in English, French, Spanish and Arabic. You can easily navigate all the resources through the following table of contents: