Working groups on anticipatory action and health

Many anticipatory action initiatives to date have focused on extreme climate and weather events, but there are increasing opportunities to look beyond these and act ahead of other hazards. These include disease outbreaks and epidemics, which are drivers of immense human suffering and loss, with major socio-economic impacts. The COVID-19 pandemic has also amplified the need to consider the compounding and exacerbating impacts on vulnerabilities when multiple hazards - such as epidemics and climate change - coincide.

Technological progress in scientific modelling and forecasting systems are enabling better predictions of who, how, when and where people might be affected by disease outbreaks and epidemics. These advances are providing increased opportunities to develop, implement and expand anticipatory action approaches for health, for example to anticipate cholera epidemics or dengue outbreaks.

Red Cross Red Crescent working group


The Red Cross Red Crescent working group on anticipatory action and health seeks to advance the work being done on anticipating and preventing negative health outcomes within the Red Cross Red Crescent Movement. It aims to:

  • strengthen, in a more systematic way, the Movement’s knowledge exchange, practice and tools on anticipating and preventing negative health and nutritional outcomes
  • foster improved collaboration within the Movement around this theme.
  • build the evidence base and practice on effective anticipatory action for health and nutrition, with the ambition to develop early action protocols for specific health risks.

The working group will build on the valuable work done by many National Societies worldwide, particularly with regard to outbreak preparedness and response, while seeking to identify and capitalize on the opportunities provided by the anticipatory action mechanism to prevent adverse health outcomes and reduce human suffering.


The working group is hosted by the Anticipation Hub and co-chaired by the Climate Centre, the German Red Cross and the IFRC.


Membership is open to staff across the Red Cross Red Crescent Movement working in disaster risk reduction, health, water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), anticipatory action and any related field.

Multi-agency working group


The Anticipation Hub multi-agency working group on anticipatory action and health seeks to create a space to constructively and critically appraise health risk prediction models and to improve the process of operationalizing these models for anticipatory public health action. We will establish a webinar series and convene regular meetings, in order to address the following critical questions:

  • What approaches are successful to predict health outcomes with an acceptable level of confidence?
  • What health metrics are best understood by users, and most likely to translate into early action?
  • How to present health predictions in an intuitive way so that it optimises prediction interpretation and the understanding of the uncertainty and therefore increases the chances of triggering early actions?
  • How to successfully engage with the communities concerned as well as local stakeholders?
  • How to successfully monitor and evaluate health anticipation projects -both the early warning and early action components?

Each session in the webinar series will be built around a certain theme, for example, an infectious disease, a tool, or an approach, in which 1-2 presenters share their work, with time for structured discussion.  The webinar series will be established in advance, with invites and agendas of each meeting sent prior to the session. Members of the working group may attend all sessions, or choose to specifically only attend a specific webinar on a topic of interest. 


The working group is hosted by the Anticipation Hub and co-chaired by the Climate Centre and  Médecins sans Frontières (MSF).


Membership is open to humanitarian practitioners, epidemiologists, modellers, and health and anticipatory action practitioners and researchers.

You can express interest in joining the working group here


Please get in touch with the co-chairs below for more information about joining the working group.

Tilly Alcayna

technical advisor - health and climate change

Climate Centre

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Rachel Goodermote

Senior Emergency Health Advisor


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Franziska Kellerhaus

lead - health cluster

German Red Cross

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Leo Lysandre Tremblay

Lead, Malaria Anticipation Project

Médecins sans Frontières Canada

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Juan Chaves-Gonzalez

Humanitarian Affairs Officer at United Nations


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Knowledge resources on health and anticipatory action

View resources here

Working group resources

Terms of Reference - RCRC Working Group

The Anticipation Hub Working Group on Anticipatory Action (AA) and Health seeks to advance the work done by the RCRC Movement on anticipating and preventing negative health outcomes (including …

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