Global Health Security Agenda

A young health worker addresses a group of elders as part of a global health security agenda outreach program.

What is GHSA?

The Global Health Security Agenda launched in 2014 helps countries meet the requirements of the World Health Organization’s International Health Regulations (IHR) and the World Organization for Animal Health’s Performance of Veterinary Services, to prevent the spread of infectious diseases. GHSA builds country capabilities across 11 technical areas which includes 29 lines of work to reduce the health and economic burden of infectious diseases. Each line of work is externally assessed on a 1-5 scale as part of the Joint External Evaluation (JEE) process which has now been undertaken by more than 80 countries (and counting) worldwide. The GHSA leverages host government and donor partner health security investments.

The United States Government’s commitment to the GHSA is an interagency initiative that is coordinated through an Interagency Review Council in Washington and through the Ambassador in overseas missions.

Learn more about the GHSA Global Initiative here:

GHSA 2024:

GHSA 2024, the next five-year iteration of the GHSA, was officially launched at the fifth GHSA Ministerial Meeting held 6-8 November 2018 in Bali, Indonesia.

The United States Government remains firmly committed to the Global Health Security Agenda as a premier model of global engagement on health security. 

Over its five-year mandate, GHSA 2024 will work with relevant partners to support national, regional, and global efforts in evaluation, planning, resource mobilization, and implementation of activities that build health security capacity, with greater focus on sustainability, mutual accountability, and impact.

USAID’s Programmatic Approach:

USAID’s GHSA program builds upon our multi-sectoral development mission, especially our global health, food security, economic growth, and environmental portfolios; our longstanding work at the community level with local organizations; and our foreign disaster assistance and global resilience programs. We integrate with these programs, which promotes efficiency and sustainability across USAID programming and supports partner countries on their journey to self-relianceUsing the JEE, USAID builds upon our relations with partner countries to identify gaps and weakness across multi-sectoral health systems to strengthen capacity and resiliency. We work with various Ministries, including health, agriculture, finance, forestry and our strong links with international organizations, including FAO and WHO.

We currently support 14 GHSA countries across Africa in a broad range of JEE technical areas central to improving health security in our focus countries. Current focus countries include Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guinea, Kenya, Liberia, Mali, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Tanzania and Uganda. Under the GHSA 2024 mandate and USAID’s commitment to support, there will be updates to the list of countries receiving USAID/GHSA support later in 2019.

USAID’s investments in global health security work to address gaps in the zoonotic diseases and animal health services JEE technical area. This is critical since about 70% of new outbreaks emanate from animals. USAID is doing this by:

  • Strengthening the workforce technical area by preparing the next generation of health/agricultural and environmental professionals to deal with zoonotic diseases;
  • Assisting countries identify endemic zoonotic diseases and put action plans in place to prevent, detect and respond to highly pathogenic diseases;
  • Strengthening animal health and other national labs in GHSA countries, including reestablishing central veterinary laboratories to improve detection which is a key component of the laboratory and surveillance JEE technical areas.

USAID also has a major focus on promoting health security at the community level by:

  • Helping countries to build capacity in the risk communication JEE technical area by establishing risk communication programs that provide individuals and communities with the information needed to reduce the spread of diseases and outbreaks, including safe and dignified burials when needed.
  • Helping communities at high risk of infectious disease events to develop preparedness plans and train community volunteers to detect and respond to infectious disease threats in their own neighborhoods (it all takes place in communities) in accordance with the preparedness technical area.
  • Building capacity in the medical countermeasures JEE technical area by developing an agile emergency supply chain program designed to distribute commodities, like personal protective gear, that are critical during outbreaks.
  • Finally, USAID builds upon more than two decades of work addressing antimicrobial resistance by promoting AMR stewardship and preventing health care associated infections.

Our Partners

USAID’s partners vary across the technical areas and include country governments, the innovative private sector, multilateral institutions, bilateral agencies, partners experienced in zoonotic disease, surveillance, laboratory systems strengthening, risk communications, and anti-microbial resistance, and local partners working to increase preparedness within communities.


Last updated: July 03, 2019

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