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A rapid response system for monitoring, predicting, and responding to spill-over events applicable for public health decisions

Dr. Soubadra Devy

Fellow, Convenor - Suri Sehgal Centre for Biodiversity and Conservation; Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment (ATREE)

Abhayraj Naik

Co-Founder - Initiative for Climate Action (ICA)

Anish Andheria

President; Wildlife Conservation Trust (WCT)

Ajay Raghavan

Co-Founder; Initiative for Climate Action (ICA)

Prashanth N Srinivas

Assistant Director Research - Institute of Public Health (IPH), Bengaluru

Tanya Seshadri

Director - Community Health, Tribal Health Resource Centre, VGKK; Vivekananda Girijana Kalyana Kendra (VGKK)

Priyanka Jamwal

Fellow, Centre for Environment and Development; Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment (ATREE)

Uma Ramakrishnan

Professor; National Centre for Biological Sciences, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (NCBS-TIFR)


Currently we face siloed and redundant approaches in education (from primary to professional levels) that do not teach individuals to collaborate and think innovatively. This problem is coupled with a lack of capacity and ability among those at local levels to develop decentralised and context specific solutions. Simultaneously, we face a lack of openness and inclusivity in policy making, as well as a focus on short term solutions for complex problems like technologies and digitalization. We also face significant inequities within and across states regarding our health systems. These factors have led to wasted resources, duplication of efforts, contradiction of actions, and an incomplete understanding of problems due to lack of data sharing. Surges in COVID-19 in different parts of our country have reflected the lack of collaboration across sectors and bottom-up reaction rather than implementing top-down guidelines. Further, despite the space for decentralised decision making and community engagement, there has been an absence of context customised planning and implementation of solutions.


1. Identify the types of environmental, ecological, health, and socio-economic data available that can be used to monitor and predict risks and their potential impact for zoonotic spill-over events.
2. Characterize the stakeholders involved in monitoring, predicting, and responding to spill-overs and their perceptions of risks, impacts, and motivations for response.
3. Develop a communications strategy to map required information exchange pathways, points of inflection and roadblocks to information flow in effectively communicating and monitoring hazards and risks.
4. Establish a conceptual framework for monitoring, predicting, and responding to spill-over events applicable for public health decisions that can be adapted to other disaster response scenarios.


1. The learnings from this process can provide a framework to develop better public systems for multiple scenarios.
2. Providing new and/or alternative strategies for disaster preparation and response.
3. Engagement in multidisciplinary and multi stakeholder interactions and insights regarding public systems.
4. Data and stakeholder compilation for use in other disaster management scenarios.

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