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Research Paper | Medicine Science | India | Volume 4 Issue 6, June 2015
Disaster Preparedness: Current Trends and Future Directions
Abstract: Globally disasters and calamities throw up major challenges for national governments. The major challenge is the protection of life, property, and the vital life-supporting infrastructure necessary for disaster mitigation. Any delay or laxity in disaster relief could escalate the magnitude of distress for the victims. Natural disasters inflict severe damage on almost the entire spectrum of social and natural habitats, ranging from housing and shelter, water, food, health, sanitation, and waste management to information and communication networks, supply of power and energy, and transportation infrastructure. The major challenges faced in all disasters include pre- disaster early warning infrastructure, the supply of food and clean drinking water, health and sanitation, information and communication, power and energy for lighting and cooking, waste collection and disposal, including rapid disposal of dead bodies of humans and animals, disaster-proof housing and shelter, emergency and post- disaster shelters, rescue and relief operations, and transport infrastructure. Though it is not possible to prevent most of the disasters, still their effects can be alleviated or mitigated in magnitude by anticipated preparedness. Advanced disaster management technology could provide a critical support system for disaster management authorities at times of disaster-related crises. Such a technology also provides important inputs for any disaster management plan of action in modern times. Communities and individuals have to be educated on pre-disaster planning and preparedness. Awareness must be created amongst masses, for which first-aid training at grass roots level is essential. There should be a National Disaster Plan that defines the tasks of the communities and local health personnel. The paper examines the evidence for changes in thinking at the government and inter-government level. It also looks at examples of ways in which these policy undertaking are being interpreted and put into practice.
Keywords: Disaster, Earthquake, Emergency Preparedness, disaster mitigation, climate change, armed conflict, risk management, telemedicine, EMS, terrorist threats, community participation, triage guidelines
Edition: Volume 4 Issue 6, June 2015,
Pages: 227 - 252