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Longitudinal expandable shelter for medical response during disasters

Roberto Miniati, MS, Fabrizio Dori, MS, Ernesto Iadanza, MS, Marco Lo Sardo, BSEE, Sergio Boncinelli, MD


Introduction: During medical emergencies, hospitals represent the final point of the whole rescue process. Therefore, effective health mobile structures have to be inserted between hospitals and the place of the event with the aim of giving the best of cures (using appropriate and easy to use equipment) for a safer and faster evacuation to hospitals.
Methods: Literature review and national and international disaster medicine standards were the basis for this study to provide clinical, hygienical, and organizational needs to satisfy for the medical structure design. Project requirements have been obtained by analyzing structural, organizational, and clinical process necessities. Structural requirements respond to the possibility of installation on every ground type, resistance to every weather condition, and necessity of easy and fast transportation. Technological equipment is obtained from clinical evaluation for patient stabilization.
Results: The designed structure results to be a longitudinal expandable shelter (LES) for medical emergencies response organized in three internal functional areas. Possibility of automatic expandability allows rapid transportation and easy deployment. The functional internal organization provides three areas: “Diagnostic,” “Therapeutic,” and “Pre-evacuation monitoring.” Further, longitudinal expandability supports the basic hygienical rules in healthcare processes allowing the unidirectional flow of casualties from dirtier to cleaner areas of the structure.
Conclusions: LES represents the answer to expressed requisites by disaster medicine standards and guidelines. It aims to provide an efficient and effective support for sanitary aid in response to disasters or emergencies, by improving aspects related to effectiveness, hygiene, and quality of clinical performances especially for highest critical cases.


medical shelter, disaster management, new technology, field rescue

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