AWS Health
User Guide

Monitoring AWS Health Events with Amazon CloudWatch Events

You can use Amazon CloudWatch Events to detect and react to changes in the status of AWS Personal Health Dashboard (AWS Health) events. Then, based on the rules that you create, CloudWatch Events invokes one or more target actions when an event matches the values that you specify in a rule. Depending on the type of event, you can send notifications, capture event information, take corrective action, initiate events, or take other actions. You can select the following types of targets when using CloudWatch Events as a part of your AWS Health workflow:

  • AWS Lambda functions

  • Kinesis streams

  • Amazon SQS queues

  • Built-in targets (CloudWatch alarm actions)

  • Amazon SNS topics

The following are some use cases:

  • Use a Lambda function to pass a notification to a Slack channel when an event occurs.

  • Send custom text or SMS notifications with Amazon SNS when an AWS Health event happens by using Lambda and CloudWatch Events.

For samples of automation and customized alerts that you can create in response to AWS Health events, see the AWS Health Tools in GitHub.


Only those AWS Health events that are specific to your AWS account and resources are published to CloudWatch Events. This includes events such as EBS volume lost, EC2 instance store drive performance degraded, and all the scheduled change events. In contrast, Service Health Dashboard events provide information about the regional availability of a service and are not specific to AWS accounts, so they are not published to CloudWatch Events. These event types have the word "operational" in the title in the Personal Health Dashboard; for example, "SWF operational issue".

The remainder of this topic describes the basic procedure for creating a CloudWatch Events rule for AWS Health. Before you create event rules for AWS Health, however, you should do the following:

To create a CloudWatch Events rule for AWS Health:

  1. Open the CloudWatch console at

  2. In the navigation pane, choose Events.

  3. Choose Create rule, and then under Event Source, for Service Name, choose Health.

  4. Specify AWS services:

    • To make a rule that applies to all AWS services, for Event Type, choose All Events. If you choose all events, you cannot choose event type categories or event type codes.

    • To make a rule that applies to events for one service only, choose Specific Health events, choose Specific service(s), and then choose a service name from the list. For example, EC2. Note: you cannot choose more than one service.

  5. Specify event type categories (if you have selected a specific service):

    • To make a rule that applies to all event type categories, choose Any event type category.

    • To make a rule that applies to one event type category only, choose Specific event type category(s), and then choose a value from the list. For example, scheduledChange. Note: you can't choose more than one category.

  6. Specify event type codes (if you have selected a specific service and a specific event type category):

    • To make a rule that applies to all event type codes, choose Any event type code.

    • To make a rule that applies to one or more event type codes only, choose Specific event type code(s), and then choose one or more values from the list. For example, AWS_EC2_PERSISTENT_INSTANCE_RETIREMENT_SCHEDULED.

  7. Specify affected resources:

    • To make a rule that applies to all resources, choose Any resource.

    • To make a rule that applies to one or more resources only, choose Specific resource(s), and then type the IDs of one or more resources. For example, i-a1b2c34f.

  8. Review your rule setup to be sure it meets your event-monitoring requirements.

  9. In the Targets area, choose Add target*.

  10. In the Select target type list, choose the type of target you have prepared to use with this rule, and then configure any additional options required by that type.

  11. Choose Configure details.

  12. On the Configure rule details page, type a name and description for the rule, and then choose the State box to enable the rule as soon as it is created.

  13. If you're satisfied with the rule, choose Create rule.

Automating Actions for EC2 Instances

You can automate actions in response to new scheduled events for your EC2 instances. For example, you can create CloudWatch Events rules for EC2 scheduled events generated by the AWS Health service. These rules can then trigger targets, such as AWS Systems Manager Automation documents, to automate actions. You can find more options at Automating Amazon EC2 with CloudWatch Events.

For example, when an Amazon EC2 instance retirement event is scheduled for an EBS-backed EC2 instance, you can automate the stop and start of the instance so that you don't have to perform these actions manually.

Automate the stop and start of EBS-backed EC2 instances that are scheduled for retirement

  1. Open the CloudWatch console to create a CloudWatch Events rule:

  2. Edit the Event Pattern Preview, and then insert the following inputs:

    { "source": [ "" ], "detail-type": [ "AWS Health Event" ], "detail": { "service": [ "EC2" ], "eventTypeCategory": [ "scheduledChange" ], "eventTypeCode": [ "AWS_EC2_INSTANCE_RETIREMENT_SCHEDULED" ] } }

    You should see the following fields populate in the console:

  3. Select Save.

  4. Add the Systems Manager Automation document target by selecting Add target*, and then selecting SSM Automation, as shown in this figure:

  5. Choose the AWS-RestartEC2Instance Systems Manager document from the list.

  6. Configure the Input Transformer as shown here, with {"Instances":"$.resources"} as the InputPathsMap and {"InstanceId": <Instances>} as the Input Template.

  7. Choose an existing IAM role, and then create a new one with permissions to execute the SSM automation document.

If you don't have an existing IAM role with required EC2 and Systems Manager permissions, then create one

  1. Set up the required IAM permissions for CloudWatch Events to use by creating an IAM policy. Then, associate it with an IAM role for CloudWatch. For this example name the IAM role AutomationCWRole. Here is an example of such an IAM policy:

    { "Version": "2012-10-17", "Statement": [ { "Effect": "Allow", "Action": [ "ec2:StartInstances", "ec2:StopInstances", "ec2:DescribeInstanceStatus" ], "Resource": [ "*" ] }, { "Effect": "Allow", "Action": [ "ssm:*" ], "Resource": [ "*" ] }, { "Effect": "Allow", "Action": [ "sns:Publish" ], "Resource": [ "arn:aws:sns:*:*:Automation*" ] }, { "Effect": "Allow", "Action": [ "iam:PassRole" ], "Resource": "arn:aws:iam::<AccountId>:role/AutomationCWRole" } ] }
  2. Be sure to update the role ARN with the account ID and role name. Also, be sure that the role has and configured as a trusted entity for the IAM role as shown here:

    { "Version": "2012-10-17", "Statement": [ { "Effect": "Allow", "Principal": { "Service": [ "", "" ] }, "Action": "sts:AssumeRole" } ] }