MIL-OSI Translation: Assessment of crisis management during the 2nd phase of the COVID-19 pandemic

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MIL OSI Translation. Government of the Republic of France statements from French to English –

Source: Switzerland – Federal Chancellery

Federal Council

Bern, 22.06.2022 – The Federal Council took note at its meeting of 22 June 2022 of the report of the Federal Chancellery on the evaluation of the crisis management of the federal administration during the 2nd phase of the COVID-19 pandemic. 19. It accepted the thirteen recommendations made in the report and instructed the departments and the Federal Chancellery to implement them. The future organization of the federal administration’s crisis management, coordination within the federal system and the institutionalization of scientific advice to political decision-makers are the main focuses of the report.

While the report finds that the federal administration’s crisis management has worked relatively well, it nevertheless identifies shortcomings in nine areas (fields of action). The organization of the federal administration’s crisis management, coordination and consultation within the federal system and the association of scientific circles with crisis management are the areas which require the most rapid intervention. In addition, one theme recurs as a leitmotif in the results: the anticipation of potential crises and the evolution of the situation in the event of an occurrence can be improved at the strategic level. The federal administration has sometimes lacked forward-looking crisis management. The unpreparedness of the federal administration and the cantons in the face of the scale of the second wave of the pandemic, in autumn 2020, is proof of this.

Thirteen recommendations

The report makes thirteen recommendations, aimed at remedying the shortcomings observed and further improving crisis management, which the Federal Council has adopted. In order to develop the anticipatory approach and coordination within the federal administration in the event of a crisis, options for organizing crisis management at the strategic and operational levels will be presented to the Federal Council.

Collaboration between the different levels of the State must be improved in terms of coordination and consultation. Future digital solutions that will allow consultations to be conducted electronically will also need to accommodate urgent informal consultations. As part of the revision of the law on epidemics, it will also be necessary to create the legal bases which will make it compulsory to use uniform, internationally recognized standards for the digital exchange of data on communicable diseases.

Several options for the organization of scientific advice to political decision-makers will be presented to the Federal Council as part of the work following up postulate 20.3280 of State Councilor Michel.

In general, the experiments made by the federal administration will have to be integrated into the projects for the revision of the legal bases and the reference documents relevant to crisis management, such as the law on epidemics, various ordinances, the plan pandemic and instructions. Lessons learned from previous exercises and from crises that have actually occurred will need to be integrated more systematically into the overall planning of major exercises. In the field of communication, the federal administration will have to create possibilities to reach wider sections of the population, through more channels and in more languages. In addition, certain aspects of the vaccination campaign will be evaluated in order to draw lessons for future health crises.

Context and method

In December 2020, the Federal Council instructed the Federal Chancellery to carry out a 2nd evaluation of the management of the pandemic aimed at establishing whether, between August 2020 and October 2021, the Federal Administration adopted in due time the strategies and measures necessary for crisis management and whether it has implemented them adequately. The federal administration has therefore carried out a self-assessment and submitted its work to the assessment of the cantons and third parties concerned. In this context, 155 people were questioned, by means of interviews or an online questionnaire. Previous evaluations were also analyzed. The Federal Chancellery also organized two thematic workshops devoted to the association of scientific circles and the organization of crisis management by the federal administration. Regarding the first theme, it has commissioned a scientific contribution relating to the comparison of the Swiss system with the systems implemented abroad. In order to guarantee the independence of the data collection and the first analysis for the evaluation, the Federal Chancellery commissioned an external partner, the company “Interface Politikstudien GmbH”.

The Federal Council took note of the report on the evaluation of the crisis management of the federal administration during the 1st phase of the COVID-19 pandemic on 11 December 2020.

Address for sending questions

Andreas Ledergerber, information officerTel. 058 469 17 52, andreas.ledergerber@bk.admin.ch

Author

Federal Councilhttps://www.admin.ch/gov/fr/accueil.html

Federal Chancelleryhttp://www.bk.admin.ch/index.html?lang=en

EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and/or sentence structure not be perfect.

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