CCOUC members participated in and presented at the International Disaster Medicine Forum on Earthquake Medical Rescue in Sichuan, 11-13 May 2013. The forum was organised by the Chinese Society of Disaster Medicine to commemorate the devastating Wenchuan earthquake that happened five years ago.
Prof. Emily Chan, CCOUC Director, co-chaired a keynote session on the mission and role of disaster medicine in the national and global context. Two other CCOUC researchers also presented their work on community resilience in the forum. In his presentation on “Community health preparedness: Lessons learned from 512 Sichuan Earthquake” (社区健康防备工作：汶川地震的经验), Prof. Kevin Hung, CCOUC Research Manager, highlighted that as China’s epidemiological transition progresses, chronic diseases will create a substantial burden in modern disaster and medical humanitarian emergencies. Prof. Hung shared his experiences and research findings in disaster relief during the 2008 Wenchuan earthquake to raise awareness on the need for developing chronic disease management protocols in post-disaster settings.
Dr. Gemma Gao, CCOUC Research Associate, presented “The impact of public health education on community disaster preparedness – Case study among Dai and Hui minority” (公共卫生灾害教育对中国傣及回族地区居民灾害防备的影响) during another session. She used two villages in Gansu as examples to discuss the importance and challenges of socio-cultural adaptation of health messages when conducting educational interventions in ethnic-minority-based rural communities.