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Pediatric Terrorism and Disaster Preparedness

Public Health Emergency Preparedness

This resource was part of AHRQ's Public Health Emergency Preparedness program, which was discontinued on June 30, 2011, in a realignment of Federal efforts.

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Table 11.1. Environmental Constraints to Pediatric Medical Care After Large-scale Natural Disasters

Physical constraint Consequences/examples


Overexposure to the sun

Lack of clean water

Poor hygiene
Inability to comply with wound care instructions
Potential for gastrointestinal (GI) complications

Lack of food

Inadequate nutrition
Inappropriate diet
Potential for GI complications

Lack of electricity

Inability to use non-battery-powered medical devices such as nebulizers, pumps, ventilators
Inability to maintain medications at appropriate temperatures
Difficulty maintaining safe thermal environment
Inadequate light/ventilation as a safety hazard
Difficulty receiving critical information about medical care and available medical and non-medical assistance

Hazardous environments

Physical hazards (e.g., nails, tree limbs, debris, roofs, unregulated traffic intersections)
Tools (e.g., chainsaws)
Animals or insects
Allergens/plants (e.g., poison ivy)

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