Malaysian Journal of Medical Sciences
School of Medical Sciences, Universiti Sains Malaysia
Vol. 14, No. 1, 2007, pp. 79-83
Bioline Code: mj07016
Full paper language: English
Document type: Research Article
Document available free of charge
Malaysian Journal of Medical Sciences, Vol. 14, No. 1, 2007, pp. 79-83
© Copyright 2007 - Malaysian Journal of Medical Science
SHORT COMMUNICATION - POST-IMPACT DISASTER SURVEILLANCE - A MEDICAL RECONNAISSANCE TEAM AT TSUNAMI-STRUCK SRI LANKA|
Mohamad, Nasir; Abu Bakar, Nor Hidayah; Mohamed, Nik Arif Nik; Baharudin, Kamarul Aryffin; Noh, Abu Yazid Md; Ahmad, Rashidi & Rahman, Nik Hisamuddin Nik Abd.
Emergency Medicine and Disaster Medicine are two specialties which are similar in the multidisciplinary involvement during the acute phase of the disaster. Recently, there was an increase in the number of disasters in the world but not many physicians are familiar with the principles for dealing with such situations, the unique organizational demands, coordination and the urgent need for medical assistance and relief. This case report delineates our experiences at a tsunami disaster area and the approach to setting up a medical relief team in the affected area. A medical reconnaissance team comprising of an emergency doctor from Hospital Universiti Sains Malaysia (H.U.S.M) and two MERCY Malaysia members was assembled. The team flew to Colombo on day 5 after the tsunami with medical supplies and related materials. The mission started from December 31st 2004 until January 8th 2005. Our surveillance area covered the Southern and Eastern Province with a total distance of 1700 km along the coast. The strategies employed during this medical reconnaissance included risk analysis, devising a resources matrix, developing lines of communication and rapport with other relief teams, Sri Lankan government agencies, and local and international non-government organizations. As a result, our team was able to set up a medical relief camp and distribute the relief items to the tsunami victims. In conclusion, the Disaster Emergency Medical Assistant Team (DEMAT) from H.U.S.M and MERCY Malaysia were able to set up and provide medical relief with our limited resources to a large scale disaster situation.
medical reconnaissance, tsunami
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