Anger Versus Fear: Perceptions of Terrorism Among the American Public

With recent terrorist attacks in Brussels, Belgium; Paris, France; San Bernardino, California and elsewhere, the rhetoric for addressing the issue of terrorism has grown more polarized. In particular we have seen increasingly aggressive statements demanding limits to immigration, increasing vigilance against Muslim communities, and calling for more direct military action against terrorist organizations.The tone of …

The Hurricane Sandy Place Report: Evacuation Decisions, Housing Issues and Sense of Community

Hurricane Sandy was one of the largest storms on record, sweeping through the eastern seaboard of the United States with a massive diameter twice the size of Hurricane Katrina. Although wind speeds did not match those of Katrina, the combination of high tide at landfall and the lunar phase resulted in exceptionally high storm surges. …

The Hurricane Sandy Person Report: Disaster Exposure, Health Impacts, Economic Burden, and Social Well-Being

The impact a disaster has on the health of a population can be described as having a “dose-response” relationship: the larger the “dose” of the disaster, the greater the health impact or “response” among those individuals and communities exposed. This PERSON Briefing Report describes the impact of Hurricane Sandy (the dose) on the health and …

School Interventions After the Joplin Tornado

Background/Objective To qualitatively describe interventions by schools to meet children’s needs after the May 2011 Joplin, Missouri tornado. METHODS: Qualitative exploratory study conducted six months after the tornado. Key informant interviews with school staff (teachers, psychologists, guidance counselor, nurse, principal), public health official, and physicians. Report After the tornado, school staff immediately worked to contact …

Assessing the Reliability and Validity of the Evacuation Support Decision Tool

This study examines the reliability and validity of the Evacuation Decision Support Tool (EDST). The EDST is designed to provide healthcare facilities, emergency managers, and other agencies with a systematic process with which to evaluate and guide “evacuation” versus “shelter in place” decision making for a variety of “all hazards” situations. The EDST is comprised …

Measuring Individual Disaster Recovery: A Socioecological Framework

Background: Disaster recovery is a complex phenomenon. Too often, recovery is measured in singular fashion, such as quantifying rebuilt infrastructure or lifelines, without taking in to account the affected population’s individual and community recovery. A comprehensive framework is needed that encompasses a much broader and far-reaching construct with multiple underlying dimensions and numerous causal pathways; …

Recovery Research, Katrina's Fifth Anniversary, and Lessons Relearned

What may be called “disaster science” is a broad field that begins with understanding hazards, risks, and population vulnerabilities and moves on to establishing best-practice models of response, mitigation, and recovery. Gaps abound in our collective knowledge in all of these areas, and it is fair to suggest that we have only begun to scratch …

Analyzing Postdisaster Surveillance Data: The Effect of the Statistical Method

Data from existing administrative databases and ongoing surveys or surveillance methods may prove indispensable after mass traumas as a way of providing information that may be useful to emergency planners and practitioners. The analytic approach, however, may affect exposure prevalence estimates and measures of association. We compare Bayesian hierarchical modeling methods to standard survey analytic …

Public Health Disaster Research: Surveying the Field, Defining its Future

Disaster medicine and public health preparedness are commonly perceived as subfields of the larger fields of medicine and public health rather than being recognized as an emerging academic field embracing all of the disciplines that contribute to effective disaster response. As such, they serve as appropriate subjects for multidisciplinary work in the social sciences, whether …

Global Infectious Disease Surveillance And Health Intelligence

Current concerns about the spread of infectious diseases, especially unexpected (“emerging”) infections such as pandemic influenza or severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), have renewed focus on the critical importance of global early warning and rapid response. Although considerable progress has been made, many gaps remain. A number of the gaps can be addressed through increased …