Aim: This paper examines nurse-led interdisciplinary efforts to address COVID-19 vaccine inequities in Texas, United States (US) through the founding of a two-pronged community-based vaccination program, VAMOS-VaxNOW.
Methods: Using state/federal reports and guidelines, local/national news sources, and volunteers’ voices, we frame our efforts within the sociopolitical and historical contexts that contributed to the need for VAMOS-VaxNOW.
Results: Like most states, Texas distributed most of its vaccine supply to mass hubs that could efficiently serve large amounts of people. Nursing faculty at The University of Texas at Austin quickly recognized the need to expend effort into mobile clinics to reach populations who were likely to face barriers to accessing mass hubs (e.g., language barriers, transportation/mobility limitations, institutional mistrust). Leveraging long-standing relationships with community partners, we launched our first mobile vaccine clinic (VAMOS) with a historically Black church in March, 2021. From there we partnered with other community organizations serving populations experiencing vaccine inequities (e.g., Spanish-speaking churches, apartment complexes) to host mobile clinics. We also began a home visit program (VaxNow) for those facing mobility challenges or other barriers to accessing mass hubs. Our “hub-and-spoke” model was the first of its kind in our community and served as a model for others launching similar efforts.
Conclusions: VAMOS-VaxNOW highlights the importance of nurse-led, interdisciplinary disaster response. Early mobilization planning guided by a deep understanding of how present-day and historical inequities shape disaster outcomes, thoughtful leaders collaborating with community partners, compassionate volunteers, and building trust were key factors in leading the successful operation.
Aim: The purpose of this paper was to examine, based on the literature, the factors and psychological structures that lead individuals to undertake active disaster risk reduction (DRR) behavior and propose a conceptual framework for DRR behavior.
Methods: In the literature review, first the concepts affecting DRR behavior were reviewed in the nursing field in Japan and the definition and content of “Wagakoto-awareness” was examined. Next, theories were reviewed to explore the structure leading to DRR behavior. Finally, a conceptual framework for DRR behavior was developed using information gained from the literature review.
Results: Based on a literature review, a conceptual framework was developed to show what phases lead to individuals undertaking DRR behavior. This framework consists of the following four phases, provided in the order that they happen: (1) acquisition of DRR knowledge; (2) recognition of the importance of DRR behavior; (3) internalization of awareness; and (4) decision to take DRR action.
Conclusion: Although a DRR behavior conceptual framework was developed, it is necessary to verify that the four phases of this framework actually influence DRR behavior. This exploration will be presented in a future paper.
Aim: This study aimed to understand and discuss the support given to pregnant and postpartum women affected by disasters, by investigating the perspectives and resilience (the ability to cope, learn about, and overcome situations after a natural disaster) of women who experienced the 2016 Kumamoto earthquake.
Methods: Semi-structured interviews were used for data collection and qualitative analysis was performed using the qualitative method originally developed by Jiro Kawakita (KJ method). Participants were recruited from the affected area 1.5 years after the earthquake. Four pregnant women and three postpartum women who lived in the affected area were interviewed. Using the interview data, transcripts were created, themes were extracted, and themes with similar contents were combined and summarized.
Results: Five themes related to resilience were found: “supporting each other”; “confronting problems and afflictions”; “prioritizing children’s safety and security”; “taking care of any mental and physical health issues during pregnancy by myself”; and “connecting with others and sharing my experiences”. These resiliencies were affected by multiple adversities. Four themes related to adversity were found: “I experienced difficult days”; “I was afraid of large tremors and aftershocks”; “My child/children and I experienced something unusual”; and “I evacuated to a shelter, but it was terrible”. Resilience toward adversity was promoted by interaction and directed toward the future.
Conclusions: This study clarified the structure of resilience experienced by pregnant and postpartum women after a disaster. This knowledge can be used for the assessment and support of affected pregnant and postpartum women.
Aim: This paper examines the 1871 massacre against the Chinese people in Los Angeles, leading us to reconsider that massacre and relate it to the numerous hate crimes committed against Asian Americans today.
Methods: The methods used were historical research and analysis of the social, cultural, and political contexts of the Asian Massacre in the 1870s, 1880s, and 1890s.
Results: Overall, the 1871 Anti-Chinese Massacre was a devastating event that resulted in multiple deaths. It provides a useful lens for comparing current acts of racism against Asians since the COVID-19 pandemic began.
Conclusions: The United States has a long history of racist ideologies that have pushed social and political agendas to maintain power. From the grand jury’s failure to punish the murderers involved in the 1871 Chinese Massacre to political leaders posting racist tweets on social media in 2020, it is important to remember that hatred will always seek a public platform from which to spread. Nurses and in key positions to keep this from happening.
Aim: This paper examines the complexity of epidemics by addressing the multifaceted interaction of social meanings, biological forces, and collective public responses to the opioid epidemic and Opioid Use Disorder in the United States. Charles Rosenberg’s 1989 essay, “What is an epidemic?” is reconsidered using nursing as a lens.
Methods: The methods used were historical research and analysis of the social, cultural, and political context of the opioid epidemic.
Results: Medical and nursing personnel are in key positions to identify and treat those suffering from the opioid epidemic and Opioid Use Disorder as well as screen those at high risk. They can do so without placing the blame on personal misconduct and instead focus on treatment.
Conclusion: Epidemics leave behind lessons that can either be forgotten or used to inform future practice. In the aftermath of an epidemic, the community is faced with creating meaning and dealing with related challenges.
Aim: Japan is a particularly disaster-prone country, with natural disasters posing a constant threat to the health and safety of the country’s residents. Foreign residents in Japan have been identified as a group considered more vulnerable to disasters occurring in the country. The purpose of this paper is to describe findings from a pilot study exploring knowledge and perspectives related to disaster preparedness among foreign residents in Japan. It also highlights ways that public health nurses can contribute to enhanced disaster preparedness among members of this group.
Methods: A qualitative pilot study using key informant interviews and small group discussions was conducted. Participants were foreign residents living in two small cities in central Japan. A semi-structured interview guide was used, which focused discussion on knowledge, attitudes, and practices related to participants’ household disaster preparedness. Interview data were analyzed using thematic analysis.
Results: Fifteen participants (N=15) were interviewed. Four major themes emerged: attitudes regarding disaster preparedness and risk; sense of community; perceived ability to prepare for disasters; and disaster preparedness behaviors. Participants provided suggestions on how to engage with foreign residents living in Japan regarding improving disaster preparedness among this population.
Conclusions: Findings suggest that communal linkages and language barriers were important factors influencing disaster preparedness among foreign residents in Japan. Information gained from this pilot study can serve as a basis for larger follow-up research studies, as well as provide insight on how to adapt community resources and services to better address the disaster preparedness needs of Japan’s foreign residents.
Aim: The purpose of this study was to assess the significance of the Disaster Preparedness Scale for Nursing (DPSN) as a tool for disaster preparedness in nursing and to determine the extent of which 131 DPSN items could be implemented in hospitals, public health clinics and academic institutions.
Methods: The DPSN tool and online questionnaire to rank the implementation rate and significance of the DPSN tool was sent to 1,434 Japanese nursing facilities that included hospitals, public health centers and nursing universities. Two anonymous responses from each facility were requested. Average scores were calculated from all respondents in their respective facility type. The results were compared between respondents who had first-hand disaster experience in a base hospital located in the disaster area with those who provided remote response support experience.
Results: The overall significance of the DPSN tool was relatively high for all respondents. There seemed to be several challenges that would impede the implementation of the DPSN tool in each respondent’s respective facility. Additionally, some responded that certain items were “Not Applicable” at their facility.
Conclusions: The results suggest that most of the 131 items of the DPSN tool should be implemented to help nurses with their disaster preparedness. The level of nursing preparedness in managing disasters is still relatively low, thus it is believed that the DPSN tool can help raise this level at all nursing facilities throughout Japan.
Aim: This study aimed to clarify the factors influencing disaster prevention awareness and their association with disaster preparedness among residents living in mountainous areas of Japan.
Methods: An anonymous self-administered questionnaire survey was conducted with health examination participants in City A in August 2018. The survey items included basic attributes, disaster prevention awareness and related factors, and disaster preparedness. Descriptive statistics were performed on each item, followed by a t-test and multiple regression analysis.
Results: In total, 113 (48.7%) valid responses were received. The mean total score on the Disaster Prevention Awareness Scale was 82.3, which was significantly higher than that found in a national survey (p < 0.01). As a result of the multiple regression analysis, “Number of years of residence” and “Experience participating in disaster prevention events” were extracted as factors affecting disaster awareness (R2 = 0.222). Significant relationships (p < 0.05) were found for all sub-factors except “Be covered by earthquake insurance”.
Conclusion: The implementation rate of disaster prevention awareness and preparedness among residents living in mountainous areas of Japan was higher than that reported in a national survey. “Number of years of residence” and “Experience participating in disaster prevention events” were extracted as factors affecting disaster awareness. In the context of preparedness, all items were related, except for “Be covered by earthquake insurance”, which is difficult to address, even if disaster prevention awareness is high, because it represents an economic burden.
A new coronavirus pandemic broke out in 2020. As a countermeasure, cluster control based on active epidemiological surveys was undertaken under the jurisdiction of public health centers in Japan. However, as the number of infected people increased, the workload exceeded the processing capability of public health centers. In response to the national and prefectural government’s request to avoid functional failure due to overwork and understaffing, university faculty members provided operational support to the public health center throughout the day and night. We would like to report the issues of inter-regional cooperation that emerged from our experience.