Disasters and a register for foreign medical teams
HCRI article published in The Lancet.
‘The tsunami in Asia and earthquakes in Pakistan, Iran, Indonesia, and Haiti at the start of the 21st century, and now the earthquake and tsunami in Japan, have emphasised people’s continuing willingness to respond to large-scale disasters overseas. However, these individual acts of altruism are tempered by criticisms about lack of preparedness, coordination, and appropriate skills. In the UK, many of these volunteers work in the National Health Service (NHS), and a sudden exodus of highly skilled staff can put considerable strain on their institutions. To address these issues, a formal register of UK surgeons, anaesthetists, emergency physicians and nurses, and other supporting medical, nursing, and paramedical staff has been established.’