1887
Volume 2020 Number 3
  • ISSN: 1999-7086
  • EISSN: 1999-7094

Abstract

A mass gathering (MG) is defined as a collection of at least 1000 people at a single location over one to several days or weeks1. Potential sites for a disaster include festivals, sporting events, conventions, refugee camps, globalization by travel, and might involve a wide range of age groups. The potential number of patients and illnesses or injuries is affected by environmental, biochemical, and psychological factors. Children are vulnerable to higher rates of illnesses or injuries due to multiple factors such as their anatomical and physiological differences in comparison to adults2, lower motor and cognitive skills, and inability to know how and when to escape from danger. Children emergency cases are challenging and difficult to handle for healthcare providers in MG incidents due to some factors such as lack of pediatric cases, lack of training and experience in dealing with children, unfamiliarity with using the special equipment for treating children, communication barriers, the absence of a caregiver or personal identification card, inability to provide medical and allergic histories. The use of personal protective equipment can also complicate the assessment and treatment process as it may frighten children. In preparation for the FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar the figures to take into consideration are presented in Table 1. We aim to propose strategies to enhance the safety and care of children involved in MGs. Although they represent a very small proportion of the population in Qatar, children need special strategies from an emergency management viewpoint3 which we are proposing in Table 2. Adequate preparation is the responsibility of pre-hospital and emergency department healthcare providers, children healthcare agencies, and emergency managers. Several factors make children more vulnerable in mass gatherings incidents and this needs to be considered in emergency preparedness. A multi-disciplinary management team approach should be emphasized, developed, and disseminated through continuing professional development courses.

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2021-01-20
2021-08-03
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References

  1. Al-Tawfiq JA, Gautret P, Benkouiten S, Memish ZA. Mass Gatherings and the Spread of Respiratory Infections. Lessons from the Hajj. Ann Am Thoracic Soc. 2016;13(6):759–65 .
  2. Davis EA, Hansen R, Mincin J. Vulnerable populations and Public Health Disaster Preparedness. In Reilly MJ, Markenson DS (Eds). Health Care Emergency Management: Principles and Practice. Jones & Bartlett Publishers. 2011; pp. 371–400 .
  3. Toltzis P, Soto-Campos G, Kuhn EM, Hahn R, Kanter RK, Wetzel RC. Evidence-Based Pediatric Outcome Predictors to Guide the Allocation of Critical Care Resources in a Mass Casualty Event. Pediatr Crit Care Med. 2015 1;16(7):e207–16 .
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  • Article Type: Conference Abstract
Keyword(s): children , emergency preparedness , mass gathering , pediatrics and vulnerable
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