Chronic health needs immediately after natural disasters in middle-income countries: the case of the 2008 Sichuan, China earthquake.
Chan EYY., Kim J.
Few studies have focused on chronic health needs immediately after natural disasters in middle-income countries. This study examines chronic medical needs during the acute phase after the 2008 Sichuan earthquake. A descriptive, cross-sectional study was conducted in an emergency triage clinic in Sichuan, China. Information on physical, social, and public health preparedness was collected in predesigned templates. Descriptive and Pearson's χ association analyses were conducted. One hundred and eighty-two evacuees were received at the triage site. Of these, 54% required trauma treatment and 77% of evacuated patients who required care had underlying chronic medical conditions. Tetanus immunizations and the possession of chronic health medication were low, particularly among older patients. Chronic health needs constituted a significant proportion of emergency care during the acute phase in the study population. Effective post-disaster assistance requires attention to demographic and epidemiological population profiles.