Many natural disasters like earthquake, hurricanes, droughts and excessive rains happen within seconds. Calamities are considered as very traumatic, not for the people but also the community at large. During the last two decades, more than 3 billion families have suffered due to many natural disasters. The incidence and human consequence of disasters have increased due to the increasing human population. Therefore, the public health strategists focus on providing care to all the natural disaster victims. Moreover, the nurses are trained in such a way that they not only deal with physical pain but with mental stress as well (Bliss & While, 2014).
During the late twentieth-century disaster research came out as a complex scholarly endeavor. Public health experts and psychologists are working on the impact of the disaster on the human brain and emotions. Whatever the impact is the public health strategists are designing policies according to the needs of the victims. The nurses play an important role in this regard. As the nurses are only public health workers, who go to the affected areas to rescue the victims. (Bliss & While, 2014).
Therefore, the focus is on improving the capabilities of nurses by providing them with basic knowledge and skills. They are trained in such a way that they excel not only in providing physical treatment to the victims but also assess the mental sufferings of the survivors which are prominent in the form of depression and PTSD. These symptoms are noted not only in adults but in children as well. These training majorly deal with emotional stresses as a result of natural disasters, the individuals are asked different questions to assess the depth of the trauma.
District nursing services is another health care initiative which plays an important role in treating susceptible people with some complicated healthcare requirements who wants to remain and die in their homes if that is the choice of the person and his family. District nurses in this regard have the required potentials to treat the patients at their homes and avoid unnecessary hospital admission. Therefore, they are the key members of the primary healthcare team.
The community health nursing practice target vulnerable population like the flood victims as a main responsibility towards the whole population. The community health nursing is taking the initiative to enhance the preparedness for the vulnerable populations. It’s not completely in the hands of government to outreach to the population, but the general citizens also have to play their role by helping their neighbors. They should be encouraged and empowered by the common citizens to ask for help from the public health sector. The empowerment of the vulnerable population is vital to heal and recover their losses.
First, psychosocial support is very important. Secondly, access to the basic needs of life, and move them to safe places. Third, the affected people should be given medical support, and especially to the children, infant, pregnant women, and elders. These disasters mostly have three major impacts on the affected population. It affects the mental health, physical health, and the community health impact of the vulnerable population (Ferrera et al., 2015). We have observed that the minority groups are mostly at higher risk for all kind of environmental disasters and hazards.
So, they need more attention and care regarding food security and public health. The continuously exposed to the risk of disasters communities must be provided with more facilities than settled areas. The strategies to cope with such disasters are to engage more stakeholders in conversation regarding climate change and public awareness (Becker, S. M. 2014).
The vulnerable population can be helped easily by sending a team of nurses with all the proper requirements (Ferrera et al., 2015). These nurses should be trained to survive and treat the patients under difficult circumstances. Most of the time, more than physical injuries the children especially undergo emotional traumas, so the nurses should be trained in such a way that problems like these can also be tackled easily by them. The gap in the health care department is huge; policies are still missing for individuals facing financial problems, patients with mental issues and specific population like children, aged people, and women. In addition to these, specific training should also be given to the population on how to survive under natural calamity. The NGOs and government should collaborate in order to provide maximum facilities to the population. Studies also suggest that there is no mental health preparedness available for such population (Roudini, Khankeh, & Witruk, 2017). Therefore, the nurses and also the health care providers should keep this in mind while designing policies.
- Becker, S. M. (2014) Psychosocial Care for Women Survivors of the Tsunami Disaster in India. American Journal of Public Health, 99(4), 654–658.
- Bliss, J., & While, A. E. (2014). Meeting the needs of vulnerable patients: The need for team working across general practice and community nursing services. London Journal of Primary Care, 6(6), 149–153.
- Ferrera, M. J., Sacks, T. K., Perez, M., Nixon, J. P., Asis, D., & Coleman, R. W. L. (2015). Empowering immigrant youth in Chicago: utilizing CBPR to document the impact of a youth health service corps program. Family & community health, 38(1), 12-21.
- Roudini, J., Khankeh, H. R., & Witruk, E. (2017). Disaster mental health preparedness in the community: A systematic review study. Health Psychology Open, 4(1).