Interviews
Tony Gibbs: "The most expensive hospital is the one that fails"

GENEVA, 10 October 2007.  In 2007, the UN Sasakawa Award for Disaster Risk Reduction Jury selected Tony Gibbs, a national of Grenada and Barbados currently working with the Pan American Health Organization (World Health Organization in the Americas) on hospital safety, as one of its two Sasakawa Award Laureates. A pioneer in promoting safe architectural designs against natural hazards, he has made a significant contribution to hazard awareness and disaster risk reduction by designing building structures resilient to earthquake and wind forces. 

Why did you start working in this field of hospital safety?
From the start of my professional career I worked with companies and engineers who were concerned about designing structures to resist the natural hazards of hurricanes and earthquakes. So I took it for granted that I should pay attention to these matters. In particular, the Pan American Health Organization (World Health Organization in the Americas) gave me the opportunity, starting in 1985, to work on vulnerability analyses and retrofitting of existing healthcare buildings, and on design issues for new buildings.

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