To send content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about sending content to .
To send content items to your Kindle, first ensure firstname.lastname@example.org
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about sending to your Kindle.
Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
Despite federal and local efforts to educate the public to prepare for major emergencies, many US households remain unprepared for such occurrences. United States Armed Forces veterans are at particular risk during public health emergencies as they are more likely than the general population to have multiple health conditions.
This study compares general levels of household emergency preparedness between veterans and nonveterans by focusing on seven surrogate measures of household emergency preparedness (a 3-day supply of food, water, and prescription medications, a battery-operated radio and flashlight, a written evacuation plan, and an expressed willingness to leave the community during a mandatory evacuation). This study used data from the 2006 through 2010 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), a state representative, random sample of adults aged 18 and older living in 14 states.
The majority of veteran and nonveteran households had a 3-day supply of food (88% vs 82%, respectively) and prescription medications (95% vs 89%, respectively), access to a working, battery-operated radio (82% vs 77%, respectively) and flashlight (97% vs 95%, respectively), and were willing to leave the community during a mandatory evacuation (91% vs 96%, respectively). These populations were far less likely to have a 3-day supply of water (61% vs 52%, respectively) and a written evacuation plan (24% vs 21%, respectively). After adjusting for various sociodemographic covariates, general health status, and disability status, households with veterans were significantly more likely than households without veterans to have 3-day supplies of food, water, and prescription medications, and a written evacuation plan; less likely to indicate that they would leave their community during a mandatory evacuation; and equally likely to have a working, battery-operated radio and flashlight.
These findings suggest that veteran households appear to be better prepared for emergencies than do nonveteran households, although the lower expressed likelihood of veterans households to evacuate when ordered to do so may place them at a somewhat greater risk of harm during such events. Further research should examine household preparedness among other vulnerable groups including subgroups of veteran populations and the reasons why their preparedness may differ from the general population.
Der-MartirosianC, StrineT, AtiaM, ChuK, MitchellMN, DobalianA. General Household Emergency Preparedness: A Comparison Between Veterans and Nonveterans. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2014;29(2):1-7.
Individuals with chronic conditions often experience exacerbation of those conditions and have specialized medical needs after a disaster. Less is known about the level of disaster preparedness of this particular population and the extent to which being prepared might have an impact on the risk of disease exacerbation. The purpose of this study was to examine the association between self-reported asthma, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes and levels of household disaster preparedness.
Data were analyzed from 14 US states participating in the 2006-2010 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), a large state-based telephone survey. Chi-square statistics and adjusted prevalence ratios were calculated.
After adjusting for sociodemographic characteristics, as compared to those without each condition, persons with cardiovascular disease (aPR = 1.09; 95% CI, 1.01-1.17) and diabetes (aPR = 1.13; 95% CI, 1.05-1.22) were slightly more likely to have an evacuation plan and individuals with diabetes (aPR = 1.04; 95% CI, 1.02-1.05) and asthma (aPR = 1.02; 95% CI, 1.01-1.04) were slightly more likely to have a 3-day supply of prescription medication. There were no statistically significant differences in the prevalence for all other preparedness measures (3-day supply of food and water, working radio and flashlight, willingness to leave during a mandatory evacuation) between those with and those without each chronic condition.
Despite the increased morbidity and mortality associated with chronic conditions, persons with diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and asthma were generally not more prepared for natural or man-made disasters than those without each chronic condition.
KoJY, StrineTW, AllweissP. Chronic Conditions and Household Preparedness for Public Health Emergencies: Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, 2006-2010. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2014;29(1):1-8.
This study examined the association between self-reported levels of household disaster preparedness and a range of physical and mental health quality of life outcomes.
Data collected from 14 states participating in a large state-based telephone survey were analyzed (n = 104 654). Household disaster-preparedness items included having a 3-day supply of food, water, and prescription medications; a working battery-powered radio and flashlight; an evacuation plan; and a willingness to evacuate when instructed to do so. Quality-of-life items were categorized into 2 domains: physical health (general health, unhealthy physical days, and activity-limited days) and mental health (unhealthy mental days, social and emotional support, and life satisfaction).
Persons with self-reported impaired mental health were generally less likely to report being prepared for a disaster than those who did not report impairment in each domain. Persons with low life satisfaction were among the least likely to be prepared, followed by those with inadequate social and emotional support, and then by those with frequent mental distress. Persons reporting physical impairments also reported deficits in many of the preparedness items. However, after adjusting for sociodemographic characteristics, some of the associations were attenuated and no longer significant.
Persons reporting impaired quality of life are vulnerable to increased mental and physical distress during a disaster, and their vulnerability is compounded if they are ill-prepared. Therefore, persons reporting impaired quality of life should be included in the list of vulnerable populations that need disaster preparedness and response outreach.
Previous oil spills and disasters from other human-made events have shown that mental health effects to the affected population are widespread and can be significant.
There has been concern regarding the likelihood that existing public health surveillance was not capturing the mental health effects to the population affected by the Gulf Coast oil spill. The objectives of this study were to assess the mental health needs of coastal communities in the states of Alabama and Mississippi following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.
A cluster sampling methodology was used to assess the mental health status of coastal residents in three counties in Alabama four months following the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, and in the Gulf Coast counties in Mississippi 5.5 months after the oil spill.
A total of 469 residents of the selected areas were interviewed. Between 15.4 and 24.5% of the respondents reported depressive symptoms, with 21.4-31.5% reporting symptoms consistent with an anxiety disorder, and 16.3-22.8% reporting ≥14 mentally unhealthy days within the past 30 days. Overall, there were more negative quality of life indicators and negative social context outcomes than in the state's Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) survey. Between 32.1% and 35.7% of all households reported decreased income since the oil spill, and 35.5-38.2% of all households reported having been exposed to oil.
The proportion of respondents reporting negative mental health parameters in the affected Alabama and Mississippi coastal communities is higher than the proportion reported in the 2008 and 2009 BRFSS state reports, suggesting that the public health response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill should focus on mental health services in these communities.
ButtkeD, VagiS, BayleyegnT, SircarK, StrineT, MorrisonM, AllenM, WolkinA. Mental Health Needs Assessment After the Gulf Coast Oil Spill—Alabama and Mississippi, 2010. Prehosp Disaster Med.2012;27(5):1-8.
Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this to your organisation's collection.