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The Effect of Hurricane Ivan on Emergency Department Operations at the University Hospital of the West Indies



The objective of this study was to determine the impact of Hurricane Ivan on the operations of the Emergency Department (ED) at the University Hospital of the West Indies (UHWI). Hurricane Ivan, – a category four Hurricane – traversed the south coast of the island of Jamaica on September 10, 2004, causing damage to several parishes. The study design is a descriptive retrospective record-based incidence study of all admissions to the ED commencing at 8:00 am September 10, 2004 and ending at 12 midnight September 11, 2004, covering the period of the entire duration of the hurricane as well as immediately after. Injuries that took place during the hurricane, inclusive of gun-shot wounds (GSWs) represented 40% of the total patients seen. The types of admission are listed categorically as well as specific items to be considered in planning for potential disasters of higher magnitude. Overall, the coping mechanism of the ED at UHWI was adequate for this magnitude of disaster.

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e-Published: 05 Jun, 2013
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