Progress and challenges of disaster health management in China: a scoping review

Zhong, Shuang and Clark, Michele and Hou, Xiang-Yu and Zang, Yuli and FitzGerald, Gerard (2014) Progress and challenges of disaster health management in China: a scoping review. Global Health Action, 7:24986. pp. 1-9. ISSN 654-9716

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Background Despite the importance of an effective health system response to various disasters, relevant research is still in its infancy, especially in middle- and low-income countries.

Objective This paper provides an overview of the status of disaster health management in China, with its aim to promote the effectiveness of the health response for reducing disaster-related mortality and morbidity.

Design A scoping review method was used to address the recent progress of and challenges to disaster health management in China. Major health electronic databases were searched to identify English and Chinese literature that were relevant to the research aims.

Results The review found that since 2003 considerable progress has been achieved in the health disaster response system in China. However, there remain challenges that hinder effective health disaster responses, including low standards of disaster-resistant infrastructure safety, the lack of specific disaster plans, poor emergency coordination between hospitals, lack of portable diagnostic equipment and underdeveloped triage skills, surge capacity, and psychological interventions. Additional challenges include the fragmentation of the emergency health service system, a lack of specific legislation for emergencies, disparities in the distribution of funding, and inadequate cost-effective considerations for disaster rescue.

Conclusions One solution identified to address these challenges appears to be through corresponding policy strategies at multiple levels (e.g. community, hospital, and healthcare system level).

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Global Health Action 2014. c. 2014 Shuang Zhong et al. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons CC-BY 4.0 License (, allowing third parties to copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format and to remix, transform, and build upon the material for any purpose, even commercially, provided the original work is properly cited and states its license.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Date Deposited: 27 Sep 2021 05:50
Last Modified: 27 Sep 2021 06:10
Uncontrolled Keywords: China; disaster management; disaster resilience; health policy; health system
Fields of Research (2008): 11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111709 Health Care Administration
11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1103 Clinical Sciences > 110305 Emergency Medicine
Fields of Research (2020): 32 BIOMEDICAL AND CLINICAL SCIENCES > 3202 Clinical sciences > 320207 Emergency medicine
42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4203 Health services and systems > 420306 Health care administration
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