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Table 2 Characteristics of the WHO-supported AAR and SimEx conducted worldwide where reports were available, February 2016 to December 2019

From: Simulation exercises and after action reviews – analysis of outputs during 2016–2019 to strengthen global health emergency preparedness and response

AAR (n = 42) SimEx (n = 56a)
  No. %   No. %
WHO Regionb    WHO Regiona, b, c   
AFR 32 (76.2%) AFR 32 (52.5%)
AMR AMR 1 (1.6%)
EMR 3 (7.1%) EMR 8 (13.1%)
EUR 5 (11.9%) EUR 12 (19.7%)
SEAR SEAR 2 (3.3%)
WPR 2 (4.8%) WPR 6 (9.8%)
Year AAR conducted Year SimEx conducted
2016 2016 16 (28.6%)
2017 12 (28.6%) 2017 11 (19.6%)
2018 19 (45.2%) 2018 17 (30.4%)
2019 11 (26.2%) 2019 12 (21.4%)
Type of AAR format Type of SimEx usedd
Debrief AAR 4 (9.5%) Table top exercise 36 (62.1%)
Working group AAR 34 (81.0%) Drill 2 (3.4%)
Key informant interview AAR Functional exercise 10 (17.2%)
Mixed-method AAR 1 (2.4%) Field/full-scale exercise 10 (17.2%)
Unknowne 3 (7.1%) Unknown
Public health event category reviewedf Public health event category tested
Epidemics and pandemics 38 (90.5%) Epidemics and pandemics 46 (82.1%)
Natural disasters 3 (7.1%) Natural disasters 6 (10.7%)
Human-induced/ Societal 1 (2.4%) Human-induced/ Societal 4 (7.1%)
  1. AAR after action review, SimEx simulation exercise, WHO World Health Organization, AFR African region, AMR Region of the Americas, SEAR South-East Asia Region, EUR European Region, EMR Eastern Mediterranean Region, WPR Western Pacific Region
  2. a One SimEx report was a global functional exercise with 33 countries from the 6 WHO regions
  3. b Member States according to the WHO designated regions
  4. c Each region was counted once for the single global SimEx report where all 6 WHO regions participated, therefore, the No. adds up to 61 instead of 56
  5. d Two SimEx reports had two types being used (e.g., a table top exercise followed by a drill), therefore the No. adds up to 58 instead of 56
  6. e AAR formats were not mentioned in 3 AAR reports
  7. f Each AAR may have one or more public health events reviewed (e.g., the country may have reviewed two epidemics at the same time). When multiple public health events were reviewed in a single AAR, events from the same public health event category was counted only once.