Medical Consultations After Typhoon Haiyan in a Field Hospital in the Philippines
SourceDisaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness, 14, 1, (2020), pp. 34-38
Article / Letter to editor
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Primary and Community Care
Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness
SubjectRadboudumc 4: lnfectious Diseases and Global Health RIHS: Radboud Institute for Health Sciences
INTRODUCTION AND OBJECTIVES: Typhoon Haiyan partially destroyed the Ormoc District Hospital in the Philippines. A field hospital was established to replace its outpatient department for 5 weeks. We investigated the reasons for medical consultation in the field hospital. METHODS: We described the consultations by sex, age, week, and diagnosis according to the Surveillance in Post-Extreme Emergencies and Disasters system. We compared the number and proportion of upper respiratory tract infections (URTIs) with a control season in 2014. RESULTS: We included 6785 consultations, 55.9% from women. The majority of consultations were communicable diseases (88.2%) followed by noncommunicable (7.1%) and injuries (5.6%). Males suffered more often from injuries than women (66.0% vs 34.0%). Consultations due to injuries decreased from 10.0% in the first to 2.9% in the last week. The most frequent diagnosis over the study period was acute respiratory infections (ARIs) (73.1%), of which 83.0% were children. The number of daily URTIs was higher than in a similar 2014 period. CONCLUSIONS: ARI was the most prevalent diagnosis. We recommend ARI treatments being fully accessible after such a disaster. During the first week, injury prevention should focus on adult men. Studies after natural disasters should include control periods to better understand disease distribution, ultimately improving the prioritization in disasters.
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