Focus on Disaster Medicine and Preparedness

Haiti's Acute Crisis Response: A Retrospective

August 13, 201015 min
Host: Maurice Pickard, MD

Guest: Thomas Kirsch, MD, MPH

Triage isn't the only issue facing healthcare professionals during the acute phase of responding to a disaster: there are also the challenges of limited resources and staffing, as well as the mental and physical preparedness of the medical response team. Dr. Thomas Kirsch, co-director of the Center for Refugee and Disaster Response in the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, assistant professor and the director of operations for the department of emergency medicine at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and deputy director of the Johns Hopkins Office of Critical Event Preparedness and Response, describes his on-the-ground experiences during the first few months after the Haiti earthquake and reflects on the acute phase of the response there. What are some of the lessons learned from Haiti that we can apply to future crises, and what parts of the response were effective? Our

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