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Humanitarian Disaster Response

Ian Civil icivil at xtra.co.nz
Sun May 15 10:42:08 BST 2011


Dear Ken,
 
Those data are available for the Christchuch earthquake if you wanted them. While small in death terms this disaster had (and has) a bigger effect on GDP in our small country percentage-wise than the earthquake and tsunami in Japan.
 
Ian C

--- On Sun, 15/5/11, KMATTOX at aol.com <KMATTOX at aol.com> wrote:


From: KMATTOX at aol.com <KMATTOX at aol.com>
Subject: Humanitarian Disaster Response
To: trauma-list at trauma.org
Date: Sunday, 15, May, 2011, 2:29 PM


I have been having trouble finding some realistic numbers for a project I  
am pursuing regarding DISASTERS, and out international responses to places 
like  Japan, Indonesia, Madrid, New Orleans, Haiti, and many  others.     
This is partially an outgrowth of discussions  with some of you on this list 
server at a Trauma Meeting in New York City last  week.      While some would 
make the assumption that it  is a HUMANITARIAN thing for any and all medical 
care personnel to immediately  want to go to a country like Haiti after a 
devastating earthquake, for the  purpose of this inquiry to this list site, I 
am making the opposite  assumption:  

Assumed:    Most IMMEDIATE international humanitarian  DISASTER health care 
responses do NOT achieve favorable short term and long term  outcomes and 
have secondary motivation factors different from "helping  people."     

So.    I have a series of questions specifically about HAITI  , but the 
principles of the questions and or statements can be made about many  recent 
disasters around the world.   

1.     Just how many live bodies were pulled out of the  rubble in HAITI 
that required surgical or medical health care?

2.    How many international surgical, orthopedic, nursing,  neurosurgeon 
teams and how many individual doctors went to Haiti during the  first week, 
the first month after the earthquake?     AT  WHAT COST,   

3.    How many patients did these teams actually  treat?    How many 
amputations, at what ages etc. ?

4.   How many of these wound debridments, amputations, etc, ended  up 
infected, and required secondary procedures?     What are  the LONG TERM outcomes 
of the patients treated during the first 4 weeks?

5.   Of the MONEY that was raised internationally for  Haiti,     How much 
was actually spent on patients and  health care, and how much ended up in 
the pockets of the politicians and  managers?

6.    Did we create more misery than pain relief?

7.    Have we with our international humanitarian health  care incentives 
in Haiti altered the well known health care infrastructure in  Haiti?    

I have many other questions to this group, but this is a  start.     I have 
heard dozens of flowery lectures and read  a lot of articles, but the 
OUTCOMES are really not addressed and as I  extrapolate between the lines, it 
appears that we, in all of our humanitarianism  may have done more harm than 
good.   

k 
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