Global Health & Medicine 2020;2(1):44-47.
Infectious Disease Emergency Specialist (IDES) Training Program in Japan: an innovative governmental challenge to respond to global public health emergencies
Saito H, Funaki T, Kamata K, Ide K, Nakamura S, Ichimura Y, Jindai K, Nishijima T, Takahashi McLellan R, Kodama C, Sugihara J, Tsuzuki S, Ujiie M, Noda H, Asanuma K
In 2015, Japan created a unique governmental program to train experts in health emergencies called Infectious Disease Emergency Specialist (IDES). This is a concept paper to set out the goal and structure of the program, and to describe the achievement and the way forward to further contribute to global health security. The IDES program background, mission, structure, achievement, and future directions were reviewed and discussed by the IDES trainees, graduates, and program coordinators/supervisors. Since 2015, thirteen Japanese medical doctors have graduated from the program while five are currently in training. The IDES core competencies were identified in the context of a wide range of skillsets required for health emergencies. A large national and global network has been created through the training. Coordinated work with surge capacity of experts is of paramount importance to prepare for and respond to public health emergencies. The IDES program can be a good model to many other governments, and contribute to global health security.