Global & Disaster Medicine

Archive for the ‘Flood’ Category

Queensland: Torrential rain and flooding in northern Australia have forced hundreds of residents to evacuate their homes in what weather officials describe as an “unprecedented” event.

NYT


The moment the dam burst!


1/31/1953: North Sea flooding kills more than 1,500 people in the Netherlands, destroys 1 million acres of farmland, wipes out 50,000 buildings and leaves 300,000 homeless

HxC

 


Brazilian Dam Collapse: 34 dead and another 300 missing


Brazil: A mining dam burst on Friday, killing at least seven and leaving 200 people missing.

NYT


Heavy rains and mudslides have caused 1 death so far and triggered roadway closures and evacuations from burn scars

WC


EMS Mobile Integrated Health & Disasters

USFA

In many communities across the country, Emergency Medical Services (EMS) provide preventative health care to help reduce unnecessary and costly trips to the emergency room and ensuing hospital admissions. EMS operating in a Mobile Integrated Health (MIH) role help patients with chronic conditions in their homes, divert ambulance calls to outpatient providers, and in some communities, use telemedicine to connect their patients with physicians from their homes.

But what if a disaster should strike? How might MIH providers best assist in the response effort?

A recent study1 was the first to examine the work of MIH providers — Richland County (South Carolina) EMS — during an October 2015 response to severe flooding.wheelchair patients



Study findings

MIH providers were able to meet vulnerable patients’ health needs in severe flooding conditions by:

  1. Reconnecting individuals in emergency shelters with:
    • Lost medications.
    • Alternative housing or social services.
    • Transportation to relocate them with family outside of the affected area.
    • Other essential health care.
  2. Readily identifying to local authorities those patients who required in-person wellness checks.
  3. Delivering food and water to patients they knew were unable to leave their homes due to a disability.
  4. Providing uninterrupted power supply for home ventilators, left ventricular assist devices, and other medical equipment.

EMS physicians augmented MIH services during the flood response by performing telephone triage and self-care instruction to patients cut off from EMS. They responded to the field and provided consultation to MIH as needed.

Research takeaways for MIH providers

  • Include disaster response in the MIH training curriculum.
  • Help patients prepare for disasters by emphasizing the need for an evacuation plan and to safeguard adequate supplies of medications and durable medical equipment.
  • Identify ahead of time community members with complex medical needs, such as people who require access to uninterrupted power for life-sustaining medical equipment.

1Gainey C., Brown H., Gerard W. (2018). Utilization of Mobile Integrated Health Providers During a Flood Disaster in South Carolina. Prehospital and disaster medicine: 33(4), 432-435.

 


11/17/1471: a storm in the North Sea batters the European coastline. Over the next several days, approximately 10,000 people in what is now the Netherlands died in the resulting floods.

History


Venice under water: Strong winds raised the water level over 5 feet before receding.


10/9/1963, Italy: A landslide leads to over 2,000 deaths when it causes a sudden and massive wave of water to overwhelm the Diga del Vajont dam.

History


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