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Family emergency plan and preparedness among medical practitioners in Zaria, Nigeria

Jerry Godfrey Makama, MBBS, FWACS, FACS, Istifanus Anekoson Joshua, MBBS, MPH, Elizabeth Jerry Makama, RN, RM, PGDDRMDS, MDRMDS

Abstract


Background: There has been an increase in the incidence of disasters in many parts of the world. Similarly, Nigeria has witnessed a recent increase of man-made disaster events such as plane crash, fire incidents, flood, and building collapse, including bomb blast orchestrated by terrorists that often create emergency situations. Therefore, the aim of the study was to evaluate family emergency plan and preparedness among medical practitioners in Zaria.

Methods: This was a cross-sectional descriptive study (May-July, 2013) of medical practitioners in Zaria, Nigeria. The structured questionnaire sought the socio-demographic features of the respondents, the availability of emergency gate(s) in the house, education of safety measures within and outside the house, well-known located shut-off devices for gases, electricity, and water in the house, and written document/policy in the event of disaster. Also, planned orientations/ drills/sensitizations, whether there is contact information of family members and supporting agencies.

Results: Majority of the respondents were male 56 (80.0 percent) and fall within the age group of 46-50 years (20.0 percent). Only 8.6 percent admitted having an unwritten policy on emergency management in their houses. Similarly, only 8.6 percent do create time to teach their family members on emergency management. Only 27 (38.6 percent) had emergency supplies kits and among this group, water appears to be the most essential component that the respondents had paid attention to, leaving out special items. The communication plans of respondents to likely supportive services/agencies during disaster showed that majority had contact address or have affirmative plans for hospital and ambulance services than for radio and television stations.

Conclusion: Family emergency plans and preparedness among medical practitioners in Zaria are extremely low. There is a gap between knowledge of what need to be done to enhance preparedness and internalizing preparedness recommendations in the study area.


Keywords


family, household, emergency plan, disaster, preparedness, Nigeria

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References


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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5055/ajdm.2017.0258

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