New app launched to boost efforts on disaster response

Jasmin Romero, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 14 2022 10:40 PM

MANILA - The government launched Wednesday a new app that is expected to boost disaster preparedness and response of both the national and the local governments.

The app called “PlanSmart Ready to Build” web was launched by the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) and the Office of Civil Defense (OCD), together with the World Bank.

PlanSmart is expected to “revolutionize the Disaster Risk Reduction and Management planning processes” by generating systematically a “Rehabilitation and Recovery Plan” using scientific data, GeoRiskPH calculation tools, and overlaying it on a planning document template, authorities said.;

It is also a “one-stop web app” to enable stakeholders to access vital information that can mobilize their planning, such as the number of people expected to be affected by a disaster, hazard assessments, how to mobilize resources, and sources of funding, among others.

"It is a governance platform which would enable us from the national to local governments, from the private sector, to individual citizens to provide information to analyze this data and to guide decision-makers in a transparent and systematic and efficient manner,” DOST Secretary Renato Solidum said.

One of the challenges that the app seeks to resolve is information-gathering and analysis since information is decentralized as most local government units have their own databases.

“The real problem though is we don't have a single collector of data that provides us with standard codes that would make us share data easily so that we can overlay this, analyze this to get the most benefit out of it,” Solidum said.

The new web app is free and can be accessed by anyone at bit.ly/PlanSmartReadyToRebuild