Turkish Neurosurgery 2019 , Vol 29 , Num 3
Collegiate Neurosurgery in Disaster and Mass Medical Emergencies: Lessons Learned from Mexico
1University of Guadalajara, Health Sciences University Center, Institute of Traslational Neurosciences, Department of Neurosciences, Guadalajara, Mexico DOI : 10.5137/1019-5149.JTN.24629-18.2 Every year, natural or people-generated disasters disrupt the functioning of society, causing human, and material loses, which lead to an increase in the demand for medical attention. In the morning of September 19, 2017, a 7.1-magnitude earthquake struck Mexico City and four other cities, leaving around 19 million people affected and 331 dead. Although the medical response was timely, most of the efforts fell short because demand exceeded responsiveness. This incident evidenced the challenges that we have as caregivers with mass medical emergency, and the need for direct and well-structured interventions of professional-medical associations in the immediate response, on both in-site and in-hospital settings.

The aim of this paper is to analyze how we respond to these medical emergencies and what new strategies have been proposed in order to identify the weaknesses and areas of improvement, as well as to restructure our methods of emergency intervention. We searched all the information in both official institutional and social media with a public sanitary scope. We submitted this information to a descriptive qualitative analysis and compared with official information and management. We found an important role for social media as a means of communication and civil organization. Collegiate medical societies, such as neurosurgeons, showed a limited reach, little on-site intervention, and poor use of social media and other strategies to improve the response. Finally, we propose how we may approach these mass medical emergencies in a better way, taking advantage of new technologies and strategies. Keywords : Disaster medicine, Medical emergency, Neurosurgery

Corresponding author : Rodrigo RAMOS-ZÚÑIGA, rodrigorz13@gmail.com