Document Type : Original Article
Assistant Professor, Department of Health in Disasters and Emergencies, Health Human Resources Research Center, School of Management and Medical Informatics, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran
PhD Candidate of Health in Disasters and Emergencies, Student Research Committee, Department of Health in Disasters and Emergencies, Health Human Resources Research Center, School of Management and Medical Informatics, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran
Assistant Professor, Research Center for Health Management in Mass Gathering, Red Crescent society of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Tehran, Iran
Background: Iran is a disaster-prone country, and many flood events occur in its provinces annually. The unprecedented amount of rainfall in the northern region of Iran (from March 17 to 22, 2019) led to flash flooding of the Golestan Province.
Objectives: This study assessed the challenges and strengths of health-related needs in the first 10 days after the great flood in Golestan; via interviews with experts.
Methods: This cross-sectional and qualitative study was carried out in Gonbad-e-Kavoos, Anbar Alum, Aq-Qala, Simin Shahr, and Gomishan cities of the flood-hit province of Golestan from March 21 to April 13, 2019. The data were collected using the researcher’s field observations and interviews with 26 experts and policymakers.
Results: The findings were categorized into 10 main groups namely mental health, environmental health, health education, maternal, infant, and child health, nutrition, epidemics, drugs, mobile hospitals, non-communicable diseases, and management. Environmental health issues were faced with a wide range of challenges.
Conclusion: Due to the insufficient development of many health infrastructures in underdeveloped and developing countries, health policymakers and disaster management experts should collaborate before and after the disaster to detect and resolve the flaws. This will help reduce health problems and challenges when a natural disaster occurs, particularly by diminishing the number of morbidities and mortalities.