Global Health Security Initiative

The Global Health Security Initiative (GHSI) is an informal international partnership among countries in order to exchange information and coordinate practices for confronting new threats and risks to global health. It was formed to respond to threats of biological, chemical, or radio-nuclear terrorism (CBRN), with pandemic influenza added to the scope a year later.


The idea on which the Global Health Security Initiative is based was suggested by then US Secretary of Health and Human Services, Tommy Thompson, after the World Trade Center attacks on 9 September 2001. He proposed that countries fighting bioterrorism should collaborate, share information and coordinate their efforts in order to best protect global health.

GHSI was launched in November 2001 by Canada (who hosted the first meeting in Ottawa), the European Commission, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Mexico, the United Kingdom and the United States. The World Health Organization (WHO) would act as observer to the GHSI. The ministers agreed on eight areas in which the partnership could collaborate in order to "strengthen public health preparedness and response to the threat of international biological, chemical and radio-nuclear terrorism".

In December 2002 at a meeting in Mexico City, the Ministers broadened the scope of the mandate to include the public health threat posed by pandemic influenza.

Aims and scopeEdit

GHSI states that its mandate is "to undertake concerted global action to strengthen public health preparedness and response to chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear (CBRN) threats, as well as pandemic influenza", which include intentional, accidental and naturally occurring events.


  • The Global Health Security Action Group is made up of senior officials from each member country.
  • The GHSI Secretariat organises, manages and administers meetings and committees and sets priorities.
  • Various technical/scientific working groups focus on specific areas of knowledge.

See alsoEdit


  • "About". Global Health Security Initiative.

External linksEdit