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Management of Diabetic Surgical Patients in a Deployed Field Hospital: A Model for Acute Non-Communicable Disease Care in Disaster

  • Kathleen M. McDermott (a1), Ruth M. Hardstaff (a2), Sophie Alpen (a1), David J. Read (a1) (a2) and Nicholas R. Coatsworth (a1)...


Sudden onset disasters (SODs) have affected over 1.5 billion of the world’s population in the past decade. During the same time, developing nations have faced a sustained increase in the burden of non-communicable disease (NCD) with extra pressure placed on health systems. The combined increase in SODs and the NCD epidemic facing the world’s most disaster-prone nations will present new challenges to emergency medical teams (EMTs) during disaster response. This report details the experience as an EMT during the Typhoon Haiyan disaster of 2013, with particular reference to the challenges of diabetic management in a surgical field hospital. The incidence of diabetes in this surgical cohort exceeded that of the population by a factor of four. The steps to prepare for and treat diabetes in the field provide a useful model for the management of NCD in the deployed field hospital environment after a disaster.

McDermott KM , Hardstaff RM , Alpen S , Read DJ , Coatsworth NR . Management of Diabetic Surgical Patients in a Deployed Field Hospital: A Model for Acute Non-Communicable Disease Care in Disaster. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2017;32(6):657661.


Corresponding author

Correspondence: Nick Coatsworth, MBBS, MIntPH, FRACP National Critical Care and Trauma Response Centre Royal Darwin Hospital, Rocklands Drive Tiwi Northern Territory 0810, Australia E-mail:


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Conflicts of interest: none



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Management of Diabetic Surgical Patients in a Deployed Field Hospital: A Model for Acute Non-Communicable Disease Care in Disaster

  • Kathleen M. McDermott (a1), Ruth M. Hardstaff (a2), Sophie Alpen (a1), David J. Read (a1) (a2) and Nicholas R. Coatsworth (a1)...


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