Flood Preparedness: Challenges for Hospitals in Thailand
Uma Langkulsen*,, Desire T. Rwodzi**, Marc Van der Putten*, and Nitaya Vajanapoom*
*Faculty of Public Health, Thammasat University
99 Mhu 18, Paholyothin Rd., Klong Luang, Pathum Thani 12121, Thailand
**Clinton Health Access Initiative, Harare, Zimbabwe
Cities are experiencing the need to protect people, natural and man-made resources and productive capacities against the risks posed by climate change related events. This descriptive study examines the flood preparedness of hospitals at sub-district, district, provincial, and regional levels in Thailand. In-depth interviews were conducted at fourteen hospitals in five provinces, including Nonthaburi, Pathum Thani, Nakhon Pathom, Samut Prakan, and Samut Sakhon provinces. We used content analysis for this qualitative descriptive study. The highlight findings of the study revealed that lack of disaster standard operating procedures for emergency response to flood, lack of risk mapping and vulnerability assessment, and shortage of trained risk communicators. Increasing performance in disaster and emergency preparedness and response in the hospitals is essential. We suggest that the hospitals and relevant government agencies require appropriate mechanism to enhance disaster and emergency preparedness and response. Our findings demonstrate evidence of flood preparedness, which raises concerns regarding holistic approach to disaster and emergency preparedness and response for health needs at all levels that warrant further investigation.
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