Over time, the world has undergone massive changes that have been both predicted and unpredicted. Whether natural or manmade, whenever disaster strikes, it always has a massive impact. This is where disaster management comes into play. Disaster management pertains to managing calamities by anticipating them and consequently preparing and responding to them. Effectively managing unprecedented situations by responding to them adequately has a much bigger impact than you may think.
Disaster management plays a vital role in minimizing the damage brought forth as a result of disasters. Disasters can vary from earthquakes to the collapse of a building. It is safe to say that in either scenario, having an emergency plan in place is crucial. It is said that prevention is better than cure, and carrying that same ideology to disaster management protocols not only prevents future disruptions from taking place but can greatly reduce their impact.
Here’s why having a disaster management system is of utmost importance.
1) Increases Survival Rate
The main focus during any calamity should be to protect lives. Disaster management protocols are put into place to prioritize saving lives. Managing lives can be very difficult during chaotic situations, as most people are fighting to save their own lives. Emergency drills, exits, and trained professionals can assist people in situations like these.
The task of saving lives is a very rewarding one. Luckily there are a number of degrees like MPH disaster management
that allow combating public health disasters by learning about preparation and response towards disasters of varying nature.
2) Effective Responses
Any situation garners some kind of response. However, that response can either be solution-oriented or can spread further chaos. This is why having the right type of response at the correct time is imperative. Disaster management professionals are able to deal with situations tactfully by applying their knowledge to provide a skilled response. Their training allows them to be accustomed to situations of varying natures, allowing people to navigate in the most effective way possible. Having disaster management in place allows all aspects to be dealt with in the best possible way, whether financial, economic, or health-related.
3) Controls Diseases
Perhaps a grave repercussion of when disaster strikes is the impact on people’s health. There is a high risk for diseases to spread as healthcare facilities are at their lowest at that time. Since people neglect their health, it’s easy for diseases to spread. In such situations, there is a need for proper management of healthcare facilities and medical resources. Access to clean water and sanitation is another element that requires management. A disaster management team not only has the knowledge as to how to control outbreaks, but they also specialize in how to minimize them. In some cases, people suffer from impairment or disability as a result of a disaster. Dealing with their rehabilitation
also comes under disaster management. People who are not prepared for such disasters cannot truly manage such situations as effectively. This is why disaster management is extremely significant.
4) Avoids Exacerbating Poverty Issues
Poverty is an issue the world has been battling for years now. When a disaster strikes, this issue becomes wider as the loss of lives, resources, and infrastructure has a heavy blow to businesses and, thus, economies. Natural disasters have always affected poverty-stricken people disproportionately. Not only are rural areas more vulnerable to disasters because of inadequate infrastructure, but they also do not have the capacity to absorb the loss of livelihood caused by disasters. For this reason, disaster management systems focus on reducing the impact of the disaster in order to reduce unemployment. With finances in check, people can afford sanitation and basic supplies, helping reduce their health issues.
5) Financial Management
At a time when businesses have fallen to the ground and economies
are in shambles, a need for an intermediator who can assist in rebuilding the economy is crucial. Through planning and management, finances are kept in check. The required aid is brought to those who need it, and restructuring and building homes and infrastructure are one of the primary plans of action. Communities are also brought together, and helping people reconnect is of utmost importance as everyone provides each other support.
6) Protection from security threats
When a situation is turbulent, it is the most vulnerable. They fall prey to those who are waiting for things to go awry so that they can utilize it to their advantage. An example of this is terrorists who use any opportunity to infiltrate and cause further chaos. In disaster management, they are also knowledgeable in this field and try to teach communities to remain vigilant. Since communications are disrupted, there may also be an increase in crime and violence within the community. With social unrest and weak governance, disaster management is the only way communities can receive some level of protection
7) Management of resources
It is not just humans that bear the impacts of disasters, but ecosystems and the environment fall prey as well. Wildlife and ecosystems are impacted negatively, which also means limited resources. Managing these limited resources and avoiding wastage becomes a matter of life and death. With communities devoid of social and economic structure, disaster management acts as an intermediary in coordinating and providing them with the necessities they need and managing resources.
Through experience and learning, disaster management also calls for preventing disasters from occurring in the first place. Through forecasting and preparation, many disasters can be avoided altogether. Disaster management calls for studying some of the major disasters in detail to take lessons from them and apply them to stop another one of a similar nature from occurring.
Though certain disasters can be prevented and managed, they cannot be eradicated completely. Understanding the turbulent nature of disasters allows us to brace ourselves for impact and speedily recover from it. Whether it’s a natural disaster such as volcanic activity, or a manmade disaster like global warming, the repercussions are severe. Through disaster management, relief activities such as rescue, provision of food and shelter, and transport are provided to those who need it. Such provisions are necessary for survival.