Strategies for Prevention of Communicable Diseases

Strategies for Prevention of Communicable Diseases

Before Disaster

The first phase of disaster policy making is to clarify our needs. For primary prevention, the most important risk factors of communicable diseases should be determined. The most significant risk factors in disasters are population movement and displacement. Additionally, overpopulation, economic and environmental devastation, poverty, lack of sanitary water, poor waste management, lack of shelter, malnutrition as a consequence of food shortages, and poor access to health care cause a dramatic increase in the rates of communicable diseases after disaster. Furthermore the breakdown or overwhelming of public health organizations and deficiency of health services obstruct prevention and control programs. With emphasizing on these risk factors, preparing and policy making before disasters are a critical need. The response to the disaster is a multifaceted operation requiring persistent review and modification of preparedness missions at the local, nationwide, and global level. The Aim of this phase is to decrease vulnerability to communicable diseases through reducing causalities and exposure to risk factors that provide passive protection during disaster. It needs some national regulations that reduce hazard exposure through constructing evidence-based guidelines for protecting individuals. Emergency response plans before disasters should include training in identifying and management of specific potentially threatening diseases; preparing needed equipment, supplies and materials, making local backups of supplies and tools for diagnosis and treatment, and environmental health measures for disease outbreaks. Furthermore, reinforcement of health-surveillance systems and practicing guidelines for managing information on specific diseases; increasing the awareness of potentially affected population about communicable diseases and the prerequisites for quick referral to a health facility are critical Prepositioning of emergency supplies is one mechanism of increasing preparedness for natural disasters. Additionally, in countries with potential threat of disasters, providing fully operational field hospitals providing effective and efficient health care services to the damaged people in the probable forthcoming disasters, seems critical; this plan has an important role to reduce mortality and morbidity of communicable diseases. Such strategies are significantly facilitated by continuing support of government, academic and private organizations in terms of assigning programs designed to offer up-to-date education and training.

Last modified: Monday, 21 November 2016, 9:40 AM