Rapid Communication

Mental health status and support system in disaster relief workers after the Great East Japan Earthquake

[Speaker] Ikeda, Miki Y:1,2,3
[Co-author] Katsumi, Atsushi:1, Nakaya, Makoto:1, Shimada, Hironori:2, Yatsuda, Kengo:4
1:Musashino Red Cross Hospotal (Japan), 2:Waseda University (Japan), 3:J.F.Oberlin University (Japan), 4:Japanese Red Cross Society (Japan)

Aim: Our objective in this study was to describe the critical incident stress, occupational stress, mental health outcome, and support system in disaster relief workers after the great East Japan Earthquake. Method: Four years after the Great East Japan Earthquake, 166 relief workers of Red Cross Society completed a self-administered questionnaire on the website. Results: Of the workers who completed the questionnaire, 6.6% met criteria for probable post-traumatic stress disorder, 13.9% met criteria for highly psychological stress, and 1.2% met criteria for mental health needs. Long term (over 24 days) activity on the site and acute stage in the disaster indicated poor mental health state. Medical doctor was better mental health state than other occupational workers. Conclusion: Psychological distress and mental health needs in disaster workers were still represented. Healthcare system for disaster relief workers will be needed, but the time and methods of the intervention should be considered carefully.
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