An examination of the effects of hurricane katrina

Ptsd hurricane katrina

Read a detailed timeline of how the storm developed. The waters would soon overwhelm additional levees. Photo: Shinoda, used under Creative Commons. Moreover, those who are poor tend to receive and heed fewer evacuation warnings, heightening their risk for exposure Dyson, ; Lieberman, ; Stephens et al. Morrow-Jones and Charles A. Further, formal difference-in-difference analysis confirms the results. However, the storm then crossed back into the Gulf of Mexico, where it quickly regained strength and hurricane status. Unfortunately, because this study does not track individuals from before to after the storm, it is not possible to assess which pre-hurricane factors were protective against increases in mental illness and which were not. Introduction Hurricane Katrina was the one of most devastating natural disasters in the United States that hit Southeast Louisiana in August The post-disaster surveys, which were administered over the phone by trained interviewers, included the same questions as the pre-disaster month follow-up survey, as well as a measure of PTSD and module that collected detailed information about hurricane experiences. Ninety-three percent of the evacuee students were from the most affected parishes Orleans, Jefferson, Plaquemines and St.

These storms created catastrophic damage along the Gulf Coast. Hurricane death tolls are debated, and for Katrina, counts can vary by as much as Given the extent to which mental health can affect perceptions of difficulties, we expected that objective measures of damage—such as flood depths obtained via geo-coding—would be less strongly related to pre-hurricane mental health than more subjective measures of perceived stressors and loss.

The hurricane also seriously damaged or destroyed educational and health facilities in the city, leading to numerous school closures, destruction of medical records, and reductions in the number of hospital beds and health clinics.

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If so, it would not be surprising to find that anxiety or depression measured after the disaster is associated with reports of stressful experiences. Other researchers have noted an even longer-term persistence of these symptoms Galea et al.

An examination of the effects of hurricane katrina

Adverse health consequences of Hurricane Katrina persisted for a year or more, and were most severe for those experiencing the most stressors and loss. These symptoms happened with higher probabilities among those being more disrupted [ 14 ] and tended to be worsening over time [ 15 ].

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John C. Pre-hurricane data permitted an assessment of change in physical and mental health over time and of the role of material and social resources in protecting participants from both hurricane exposure and adverse outcomes following the event.

The city is also now more racially diverse, with higher numbers of Latino and Asian residents, while a disproportionate number of African-Americans found it too difficult to return.

Hurricane katrina facts

Using a unique panel dataset that follows individuals from more than a year before the hurricane to approximately 18 months afterwards, we document changes in the physical and mental health of study participants and examine how the degree of exposure to hurricane-related stressors experienced during the hurricane is related to their post-Katrina well-being. Some neighborhoods now have fewer residents under 18 as some families chose to permanently resettle in cities like Houston, Dallas, and Atlanta. The storm struck the Gulf Coast with devastating force at daybreak on Aug. The damage was so extensive that some pundits had argued, controversially, that New Orleans should be permanently abandoned , even as the city vowed to rebuild. Likewise, Kaniasty and Norris noted that pre-disaster resources can influence the degree of disaster exposure. Moreover, the samples used in these studies were generally small, with a median sample size of across the studies. Specific transient symptoms may include distressing worries, difficulties sleeping and concentrating, and disturbing memories, many of which dissipate over time with solid emotional support Norris et al.
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Understanding the Aftermath of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita