This study aimed to assess the degree of implementation of the response to the emergency of microcephaly associated with Zika virus in Pernambuco State, Brazil. This was a normative evaluative study conducted in the initial epicenter of the public health emergency of international concern, from October 2015 to July 2017. A logical model was produced for the intervention under analysis, with the components of Management, Surveillance, and Care in the dimensions of structure, process, and result, based on technical publications and institutional guidelines, in addition to a corresponding log frame of indicators for assessment. Data were collected through a questionnaire, direct observation, and consultation of official documents. The results showed partial implementation (74.9%) of the response to the microcephaly emergency by the Pernambuco State Health Department, with the process dimension reaching 75% of the expected level and the structure dimension, 74.5%. Surveillance was the only component that was assessed as implemented (81%), although with a shortage of regional and laboratory investments, while Management (74.2%) and Care (68.8%) were partially implemented, with insufficiencies in items related to human resources and physical structure, planning, and evaluation. In conclusion, the response to the public health emergency of international concern involving microcephaly associated with the Zika virus was assessed as partially implemented, with different levels between the intervention´s components, especially surveillance when compared to management and care. The shortcomings signal the need for investments to deal with future public health emergencies, with a view towards more timely and adequate interventions.