Checklist of Specific Actions for Developing Safety and Security Plans

Core ElementSuggested Actions
Institutional commitment
  • Ensure that safety and security are institutional priorities

  • Identify a safety and security champion or team and an institutional liaison

  • Create a mission statement related to security, specifically related to the institution's commitment to the safety and security of the students and staff

  • Establish goals and objectives for the global health program

  • Identify what resources and institutional support are needed to ensure the security of staff and students

  • Create open communication avenues with leadership on security and safety during international travel

Trainee and faculty participation
  • Secure and mandate full participation from all trainees and faculty

  • Establish a culture of expecting safety and security

  • Consider requiring participants to sign safety and security pledges

Safety and security assessment and analysis
  • Create processes and procedures to continuously monitor and evaluate risks and assess threats at destination sites

  • Conduct an initial assessment of safety and security at destination sites and update these assessments regularly

  • Create incident reporting protocols

  • Create databases for reporting incidents (e.g., injuries, accidents, incidents and near misses, police reports, daily logs)

  • Consider identifying trainee and faculty safety and security profiles (e.g., related medical, cultural, and psychological profiles) and an algorithm for matching individuals to appropriate destination, training, and work sites

Risk and hazard prevention
  • Create processes and programs to mitigate and control known hazards (e.g., physical changes to compounds such as gates, fences, barriers, window bars, and improved lighting)

  • Create and implement communication response and recovery procedures and protocols

  • Assess what supplies and kits are needed at various work locations, lodgings, and health or medical work sites

  • Identify partners that provide travel insurance and evacuation services

  • Ensure travelers have received appropriate immunizations and required medications

  • Inform travelers about what to do if they become ill at the destination site

  • Work with the local organizations where faculty and students are placed to ensure they also have safety and security plans in place

  • Ensure that trainees and faculty have received appropriate immunizations and have all recommended medications and medical supplies (e.g. malaria prophylaxis, for travelers' diarrhea, HIV PEP-kits, gloves, syringes, etc.)

Safety training
  • Provide pre-departure travel safety and security training to all staff (whether they travel or not) involved, in classrooms, hands-on workshops, or online

  • Consider having access to trauma-informed care for returning travelers who may need it

  • Provide training in risk recognition and control, and what to do in an emergency

  • Provide a written safety and security plan to all travelers that includes all policies and procedures

  • Make sure security policies address country-specific issues as well as problems that may arise among team members, such as sexual assault

  • Provide frequent opportunities to discuss safety and security concerns, practice skills, and demonstrate competency

Program evaluation
  • Create mechanisms for recordkeeping and accurate logging of injuries, illnesses, fatalities, incidents, assaults, hazards, corrective actions, interventions, and training

  • Create protocols for regular assessment of incident severity, and identify trends, patterns, and methods of addressing incidents

  • Continuously monitor and modify methods of risk assessment, intervention, and training needs to identify deficiencies and opportunities for improvement

  • Design surveys and post-travel debriefing for all returning staff

  • Create success measures and outcomes and work on tracking successful implementation

  • If feasible, request outside consultation from law enforcement or safety and security experts

  • Beyond checking whether safety and security training programs exist, assess the quality and effectiveness of the programs