By Amy Lieberman



A new, interactive database built by the World Health Organization will soon shine a spotlight on the extent of violence against health care workers and the risks they are facing in some of the world’s toughest places to deliver aid.


WHO prepares to launch online database tracking health worker attacks




The online database, set to launch within the next few months, will track possible, probable and confirmed attacks in real time, which any public user can search and sort by country or type of attack. It’s a “starting point,” which could lead to a reduction in future violence altogether, said Erin Maura Kenney, the acting chief of staff for the WHO’s emergency director, who is overseeing the database’s construction.

“When we can start to get the information out there, it can be used to understand the extent and nature of the problem, related trends, then we can advocate for change and target our humanitarian interventions to reduce the likelihoods of attacks,” Kenney told Devex in a recent phone interview.

“It is an awareness building exercise as ​well, and we think people will be more likely to report attacks if they see the type of attacks that are being reported through the system, they may say, ‘Wow we did not think that was an attack on health care,'” she added.

Devex dives into the data with an interactive map that explores attacks between 1997 and 2016.