The Cospas-Sarsat programme encompasses 42 nations and provides global coverage. Its organization consists of:
- 4 founder members (United States, Russia, Canada and France) or Parties and providers of space segments, even if other nations now launch satellites for Cospas-Sarsat
- 26 nations with ground segments (antennas and receiving centres)
- 10 user nations
- 2 organizations.
Cospas-Sarsat works with three international organizations: the International Maritime Organization (IMO), the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the International Telecommunications Union (ITU).
The programme is managed by the Parties through two bodies, the Council and Secretariat, and implemented through the Cospas-Sarsat Joint Committee, which comprises two working groups: the Operations Working Group (OWG) and the Technical Working Group (TWG).
Cospas-Sarsat’s aim is to shorten rescue response times to the greatest extent possible.