Appropriate Health Management Considering the Vulnerability of Women during Disasters

Yasuhiro Miki, Kiyoshi Ito

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorial

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In situations of a disaster, it has been observed that the damage suffered by women and men is not equal. The vulnerability of women during disasters has been the focus of several studies and disaster management guidelines. Records show that there were more women victims than men victims in both the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake in 1995 and the Great East Japan Earthquake (GEJE) in 2011. Biologically speaking, women are physically less fit than men are; hence, they are more susceptible to physical disabilities induced by disasters and may be disadvantaged in evacuation situations. However, vulnerability of women during disasters is a complex problem that involves physical fitness, as well as other various factors. In the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 (SFDRR) adopted in 2015, prioritized actions such as “Build Back Better” were defined based on the GEJE experiences. In the SFDRR, in addition to vulnerability of women during disasters, medical services including maternal, newborn, and child health and sexual and reproductive health are considered the key factors for disaster risk reduction. This has been discussed in all phases of disaster risk reduction planning and post-disaster response. These findings suggest that the role of obstetrics and gynecology is comprehensive and important as a part of disaster medicine at the local and national levels, as recommended in the SFDRR. In this review, we summarized the management of women’s health and gynecological responses during disasters and considered the importance of women as stakeholders in disaster risk reduction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)187-195
Number of pages9
JournalTohoku Journal of Experimental Medicine
Volume256
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2022

Keywords

  • Great East Japan Earthquake
  • disaster medicine
  • patient’s delay
  • promotion of women’s participation
  • women’s health

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