The common gaps in health system preparedness around the world are generally well understood, but they are often not addressed in a comprehensive and systematic way. In particular, many countries have not yet developed Mass Casualty Management Plans, and communities are too often left alone to develop preparedness and response plans without guidance from higher levels. In September 2006, a Global Consultation on Mass Casualty Management was held in Geneva at WHO headquarters. The guidelines set out in this document are the direct result of the consultation. They are designed to help policy makers, decision makers and emergency managers at all levels, especially at community level, to overcome the gaps in health system preparedness for managing mass casualty incidents.
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