9: Alternating medical doctor dispatch by the Japanese society after the great east Japan earthquake

Conference: 
Author(s): 
T. Hata1, K. Ueda1, H.Maruyama1, H.Tomita2, T. Takaya3, M.Kobayashi4, S.Ishibashi4, T.Ishii4
1 Department of Medicine, Musashino Red Cross Hospital, Musashino-City, Tokyo, Japan; 2 Headquarter, the Japanese Red Cross Society, Minato-Ku, Tokyo, Japan; 3 Department of Medicine, Saitana Red Cross Hospital, Saitama, Japan; 4 Emergency Centre, Ishinomaki Red Cross Hospital, Ishiniomaki-City, Japan
Text: 
Introduction: The Great East Japan Earthquake struck off the north-east coast of Japan, 2011, and the Tsunami left almost 20,000 people dead or missing. Ishinomaki city suffered with 4,000 people left dead or missing. Fortunately, the Ishinomaki Red Cross Hospital (IRCH) was intact as it had been moved to away from the Pacific Ocean. However, other medical facilities suffered enormous damage.
Methods: The Japanese Red Cross Society (JRCS) assembled doctors from across the country and transferred them to IRCH. The purpose of mission was to support the provision of emergency medical care and to assist the Accident & Emergency department of IRCH.
Results: As many as 81 doctors were dispatched to IRCH between April and August 2011. The medical team was made up of specialists in internal medicine (38), emergency medicine (12), surgery (6), paediatrics (3), orthopaedics (3), anaesthesiology (2), obstetrics and gynaecology (2), and trainee doctors (15). At first, each team worked for 6 days and slept makeshift beds in IRCH. Volunteer doctors worked together with volunteer nurses to set up temporary medical out-patient facilities in IRCH. They worked in shifts to support the provision of secondary care across all medical fields and helped provide tertiary care. The rubble in the affected area resulted in many respiratory tract infections. Orthopaedic cases consisted of leg injuries or broken bones. Mental health was also an issue, suicide cases hanging after the disaster.
Conclusion: The Hospital in the area with many earthquakes should be moved to apart from the sea to avoid the Tsunami.

Disclosure: No conflict of interest declared