Legal preparedness is a critical component of global health security. Having a strong integrated system of legal preparedness in place ahead of a crisis can facilitate the prevention, detection, and rapid response to public health emergencies. Legal instruments (e.g., constitutions, legislation, regulations, arrêtés, decrees) can help create sustainable legal infrastructure that can support consistent decision-making at all levels before and during an emergency response. Legal preparedness as a component of global health security encourages the development, review, and refinement of systems, infrastructure, and frameworks to allow for rapid action, including legal flexibilities to easily change course if needed, and the development of legal mechanisms required during a response.
GHSA Legal Preparedness Action Package
The Global Health Security Agenda (GHSA) Legal Preparedness Action Package was officially launched in 2022 and aims to bring countries and key experts together to build a solid foundation and common understanding of the competencies necessary for strengthening public health emergency legal preparedness by developing technical tools to guide and support countries in strengthening their legal preparedness capacity and raising greater awareness globally about the role that legal preparedness plays in preparing for and responding to public health emergencies.
The United States, through the Office of Global Affairs and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention along with serves as Co-Chair of the Legal Preparedness Action Package as part of its commitment to GHSA. The other co-chairs include Argentina and the Georgetown Law’s O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law.