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Crit Care Med. 2005 Jan;33(1 Suppl):S7-12.

Integrating international responses to complex emergencies, unconventional war, and terrorism.

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Asia-Pacific Branch of the Center for International Emergency, Disaster & Refugee Studies, Schools of Medicine & Public Health, The Johns Hopkins University Medical Institutions, Baltimore, MD, USA.


The world is experiencing unprecedented violence and threats of violence, taking the form of complex internal nation-state conflicts, unconventional or guerrilla warfare against established governments, and stateless threats of terrorism by potential biologic, chemical, and nuclear weapons. What happens locally has immediate ramifications internationally. Real and potential health consequences of these events have evoked global concerns and realization that capacities and capabilities to respond to such events require unparalleled integration, coordination, and cooperation of the international community. However, politics and the institutions singular governments form are inherently limited in their objectives and capability to effectively respond. Public health, broadly defined, must be recognized as a security and strategic requirement, one that serves to build a foundation for an international integrated response capacity.

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