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Providing Continuity of Care for Chronic Diseases in the Aftermath of Katrina: From Field Experience to Policy Recommendations

Arrieta, M.I., Foreman, R.D., Crook, E.D., and Icenogle, M.L. (2009). Providing Continuity of Care for Chronic Diseases in the Aftermath of Katrina: From Field Experience to Policy Recommendations. Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness. 3(3):174-82.

The authors interviewed 30 key informants (KI), including health and social service providers that provide healthcare to the under- and uninsured along the Mississippi and Alabama Gulf Coast. Respondents indicated that mental health, diabetes mellitus, hypertension, respiratory illness, end-stage renal disease, cardiovascular disease, and cancer were medical management priorities after a disaster. The most frequently mentioned barrier to providing care was maintaining continuity of medications. Inaccessible medical records, poor patient knowledge, and financial constraints also impacted care. Implemented or suggested solutions included better pre-disaster patient education; support for electronic medical records at community health centers; and better management of donated medications/medical supplies.
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