One year after the great Tohoku disaster

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

After the great earthquake of March 11, 2011, at least seven hospitals with 723 beds along the Miyagi Prefecture northern coastline were so devastated they could no longer function, leaving only several available hospitals. The two crucial issues thus became maintaining communications and regional transport. Phones and wireless were knocked out in most hospitals and areas. Many of the severe cases had to be brought to the Tohoku University Hospital at Sendai from the above the hospitals. Tohoku University Hospital and other medical facilities in the Tohoku district were in a terrible crisis of electricity shortage. It was a critical situation, particularly for patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis requiring artificial ventilation. We should hurry to submit a guideline for medical transportation for patients with neuromuscular diseases requiring artificial ventilation. We also should research the disaster medicine in the field of neurology, and prevent the neurological disease progressing after the earthquake. A large number of hospitals in coastal areas suffered devastating damage. We do not think it is feasible or even reasonable to restore such hospitals to what they were before the disaster. We started Tohoku Medical Megabank Organization as a disaster recovery model for revitalizing the areas reported to have scarce medical services. The project provides supports to local medical services, constructs a community coalition for medical information, sets up a biobank based on large-scale cohort studies, and provides educational training to produce highly specialized medical practitioners.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1336-1338
Number of pages3
JournalClinical Neurology
Volume52
Issue number11
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2012 Dec 1

Keywords

  • Great earthquake
  • Medical transportation
  • Tohoku Medical Megabank

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology

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