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J Health Care Poor Underserved. 2012 May;23(2):523-33. doi: 10.1353/hpu.2012.0067.

The impact of natural disaster on pediatric surgical delivery: a review of Haiti six months before and after the 2010 earthquake.

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1
Children's Hospital Boston, MA, USA. chughes414@gmail.com

Abstract

Little is known about pediatric surgical disease in resource-poor countries. This study documents the surgical care of children in central Haiti and demonstrates the influence of the 2010 earthquake on pediatric surgical delivery.

METHODS:

We conducted a retrospective review of operations performed at Partners in Health/Zanmi Lasante hospitals in central Haiti.

RESULTS:

Of 2,057 operations performed prior to the earthquake, 423 were pediatric (20.6%). Congenital anomalies were the most common operative indication (159/423 operations; 33.5%). Pediatric surgical volume increased significantly after the earthquake, with 670 operations performed (23.0% post-earthquake v. 20.6% pre-earthquake, p=.03). Trauma and burns became the most common surgical diagnoses after the disaster, and operations for non-traumatic conditions decreased significantly (p<.01).

CONCLUSION:

Congenital anomalies represent a significant proportion of baseline surgical need in Haiti. A natural disaster can change the nature of pediatric surgical practice by significantly increasing demand for operative trauma care for months afterward.

PMID:
22643604
DOI:
10.1353/hpu.2012.0067
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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