Anis Kazi (MSc Public Health, 2012) works within the Western Pacific Regional Office (WPRO) World Health Organization (WHO) as an Information and Planning Consultant for the Health Emergencies Program. He shares what his role in Emergency Response has been like since the start of COVID-19.
How has the COVID-19 outbreak affected your work?
Working in Emergency Response, the sheer volume of work has increased and is all encompassing. Additionally, with the lockdowns and travel restrictions in place, modalities of work have changed. It has been at times a challenge to acclimatise and find a work around. This involves core functions of planning coordination, surge deployment and logistics.
How have you been responding to the outbreak?
I am part of the information and planning pillar of the Incident Management Support Team for COVID-19 at the WPRO, WHO. Besides epidemiological intelligence, a significant part of my work is supporting setting up and streamlining multi-source surveillance systems to inform response strategies for the countries of the region.
How has your countries response to the outbreak affected your work?
Before my recent transition, I was the Incident Manager and National Rapid Response Coordinator of Pakistan’s Polio Eradication Program. With immunisation activities suspended due to COVID-19, the whole program was retooled to support the country’s response activities. The polio program was critical in setting up a surveillance system, managing information and training personnel across every district in the country.
How has LSHTM’s training helped you during this outbreak?
The course at LSHTM was a great enabler. The degree enhances social and professional mobility, besides serving as a means of technical credibility and attestation. The exposure at the school was important for critical thinking and developing deeper interests in working towards existing health challenges, especially in one’s own context.
I would like to thank all the School staff and colleagues for a memorable experience, something I treasure and cherish. It is great to be a part of the LSHTM family.