Due to the unpredictable nature of disasters and accidents, it is essential to put in place measures for ensuring that when these do happen, the reaction is such that the loss of human life is minimal or zero. Mitigation of potential losses during disasters is essential and can best be understood in a hospital situation where disaster preparedness is mandatory. I visited Fair Mount General Hospital to get a view of disaster preparedness measures and managed to interview one of the members of the disaster preparedness team who believes the loss of one life is as significant as the loss of many lives.
One of the key disasters discussed is a mass casualty event such as a terrorist attack. Guidelines given for reaction during such an event are to check the level of preparedness and understand the measures of mitigation before the attack. During the attack, members are advised to try and leave the area as soon as possible and only call 911 after reaching safety and to seek first aid for the hurt.
In cases of severe weather such as a hurricane, the hospital has trained the members to be aware of hazards that may cause injury or death, to turn off electricity lines during such weather conditions and to turn off gas and water too. For natural events such as earthquakes, the hospital community is advised to maintain outdoor and indoor safety during such events to avoid injury.
Through this visit I managed to learn various aspects relating to disaster preparedness such as the need for disaster preparedness before the disaster strikes; the difference in reaction depending on the type of disaster and the fact that besides affecting physical things, disasters also affect humans psychologically. It is thus important to educate everyone on disaster preparedness as it can save lives and property.
Bradley, A.T. (2011). Disaster Preparedness Handbook: A Guide for Families. New York, Skyhorse Pub.
Havrilesky, H. (2011). Disaster Preparedness: A Memoir. New York, Riverhead Books.
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