2012.08.13. Updates from BJMRI

posted Aug 13, 2012, 9:35 AM by mami sato   [ updated Aug 21, 2012, 12:44 PM ]

Boston-Japan Medical Relief Initiative was formed immediately following the Great East Japan Earthquake of March 11, 2011 in order to coordinate Boston-area physicians, hospitals, medical research centers, and other concerned parties to help address the ensuing medical crisis in Japan.

It almost has been one and a half year from the tragedy, and we can see a lot of changes in Tohoku area. Residents and people who have been helping the area made a lot of progresses in order to rebuild the town. There are a lot of changes and progresses for the medical needs in the area. About after one year from 3.11, the needs for dispatched doctors and medical related people have been decreased. Because of this situation change, BJMRI ended dispatching doctors and medical related people to the disaster area and decided to move to next phrase.

Tohoku area still needs a lot of supports, and people in the area are working hard everyday to rebuild better hometown.  

This summer, BJMRI is currently conducting a medical anthropology project at Minami-sanriku! We will update more about this project later.

We are also planning to join the other projects in Iwate area as well. We are not only targeting to support the victims directly but helping those people who have been helping rebuilt Tohoku.

We will update our activity and progress of our second phrase on this webpage.

If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact us at inq@bjmri.org.

   

* Sanriku Project is to help facilitate the recovery and rebuilding process along the Sanriku coast through empowering local residents and building community resilience. (http://sanrikuproject.org/?p=5)

 

私たち (ボストン医療支援団)は、東日本大震災への医療支援として現地への医師及び医療関係者を派遣し復興支援に協力してきました。

東日本大震災が起きた2011311日からおそよ1年半経過し、復興に近づくため現地でも沢山の変化が見られました。もちろん、医療支援等に対するニーズにも変化が沢山ありました。1年経過するあたりから、現地からの医師や医療関係者派遣に対するニーズも減り、BJMRIからの派遣人数も減ってきました。そこで、BJMRIは第一目的として活動してきた医師・医療関係者派遣を復興支援の第1フレーズとして区切りをうちました。

しかしながら、現地では未だに沢山の復旧・復興に対するニーズはあり、より良い街づくりを目指して日々沢山の人が協力し合い活動しています。

現在BJMRIでは、医療人類学的な手法を用いて、被災者のメンタルヘルスへの影響を調べ、今後の街づくりに協力できるよう新たなプロジェクトに取り組んでいます。このプロジェクトに関してのアップデートも今後こちらで紹介していきます。

その他にも、被災者の方たちへの直接的な支援のみならず、被災者の方たちを支援する側の団体や組織にも協力していこうと計画中です。

今後は南三陸プロジェクトを始めとするかたちで、活動を報告していこうと思っております。

引き続きお問い合わせ等がある方はinq@bjmri.orgまでご連絡ください。

 

*三陸プロジェクトは南三陸地域住民の主体性のもと、災害に強いコミュニティづくりを目指し、三陸海岸の復旧と復興支援に寄与することを目的としているプロジェクトです。(http://sanrikuproject.org/?p=5&lang=ja)

2011.10.7: Report "Medical Relief Support at Ishinomaki -Hypertension and Alcoholism-"

posted Feb 14, 2012, 1:28 PM by BJMRI 事務局   [ updated Feb 14, 2012, 1:37 PM ]

I am a pediatric nurse from Children's Hospital Boston.  I joined the Japanese volunteer nursing organization called Cannus, and came to Ishinomaki for one week. Currently, the main focus for this organization is try to help the people transition from the schools/auditoriums/shelter areas to temporary homes.

As it has been discussed before, the mental health has been the main issue for the people in Ishinomaki. Buildings and hospitals have been restarted, so supplies are in a bundle, but people still have the fear of earthquakes. It seems as if people are even more afraid of earthquakes now compared to the time before March 11. There were already 2 small earthquakes while I was here the past 2 days. I don`t know how I can get rid of that fear from people.....

The other fear is for the elderly who are having a difficult time transitioning to the temporary homes. Many of these temporary homes were sometimes 2 hours away from their original place, making people move to a complete foreign city. All the shelter areas are completely shutting down on Oct 11, and some people are even refusing to move into their temporary homes. But of course, the city can`t place all the temporary homes near the water again....

More updates to come! I am going to a different area tomorrow, and hope to take more pictures as well. Thank you to BJMRI for helping me with this trip, and hope to update more about Ishinomaki.

Cannus`s website: nurse.jp

 

 

Hypertension and alcoholism

Two major mental health issues in Ishinomaki were elevated blood pressure and alcohol abuse. With Cannus nursing volunteer organization, we started going into the temporary homes and finding information about the residents in the homes and the environmental changes the residents are facing. We had several simple health clinics with the residents and were able to talk to the residents about their health issues. The most common problem within the elderly was elevated blood pressure. Blood pressure was easily average 150s systolic and 90s diastolic. There were many cases with systolic in 200s. Residents are mainly already taking ACE inhibitors and calcium channel blockers, but blood pressure remains to be high even with medication. My main question for this was how is the one of the healthiest country has blood pressures in 200s?

Alcoholism is one of the most growing health issue within the temporary homes. We had a presentation specifically about alcoholism and how we can help these residents. These residents are mainly 50s60s, and has been in the shelter for months and still not able to find a temporary homes. These residents are having violent behavior at times within the shelters, and causing other issues in the community. After they are transitioned to the temporary homes, there are problems of these people becoming isolated and none of the problems are solved. Cannus's main goal was to try to prevent the isolation in these temporary homes, and have the residents realize to their problems, and seek help on their own.

Attached are pictures from Ishinomaki. Even though it has been six months from the earthquake, buildings remain to be destructed as if the tsunami came through the city yesterday. I sometimes can't believe that this developed country like Japan is taking forever to rebuild the city....

Thank you very much for all the help from BJMRI and being able to share my experience to other health care workers in Boston. Hopefully this helped and influenced other health care workers to come back to Japan.
 
 

2011.9.5: Report "Medical Relief Support at Kesennuma Public Hospital"

posted Feb 14, 2012, 1:23 PM by BJMRI 事務局   [ updated Feb 14, 2012, 1:25 PM ]

Below is a report from a Gynecologist who volunteered at Kesennuma Public Hospital in September, 2011.
 
 
 
 
 

. 気仙沼市立病院

 

201195日夜より9日夕方まで、気仙沼市立病院でボランティア活動に従事いたしました。

 

気仙沼市立病院は震災前、月間30程度の分娩を取り扱う中規模中核病院だったそうです。常勤医は2名でそのお2人で分娩の他に悪性腫瘍の手術や治療、腹腔鏡の手術などもこなされておりました。

 

震災後、周囲の分娩施設減少に伴い現在分娩数は40から50件に増加しているそうです。これは産婦人科医の方ですと実感があるかと思いますが、毎日一人か二人産まれることになり、日常業務が連日延々と続くことを考えると少しずつですが確実に疲労が蓄積していくことになります。

 

そこで、全国の有志の産婦人科医がおよそ1週間交代で妊婦健診と分娩のお手伝いをしており、私もその一員として働かせていただくことになりました。

 

妊婦健診は午前中におよそ20人。手伝いに行った身からするとすこし物足りない気分でしたが常勤の先生には「それだけでも随分違います」と言っていただきました。

午後は常勤の先生方が手術に入られますので、その時間の救急外来対応と分娩がある場合はその対応ということになりました。私が働いた期間に産婦人科救急の方はいらっしゃいませんでした。

 

夜間は分娩がある場合、私が担当しました。5日間で5件の陣発入院があり、そのうち3件の正常分娩と1件の鉗子分娩を介助しました。赤ちゃん1名はTTNにより小児科管理となりましたが,

次の日に状態は安定しております。いずれの分娩も明け方の5時頃でしたが,

時差ボケのためか、毎朝4時には目がさめておりましたので、異様に元気いっぱいで分娩に臨むことができました。

気仙沼市立病院産婦人科スタッフと

 

 

気仙沼市立病院周辺は比較的片付いていましたが、海の中には依然として瓦礫が残り

海岸沿いには家や車が転がっていました。瓦礫を積んだ何台ものダンプとすれ違いました。
 
 

 

 

2. 陸前高田訪問

 

気仙沼での支援を無事に終え、その後 偶然、陸前高田市訪問する機会を得ましたので報告させていただきます。

現地で数ヶ月間ボランティア活動に携わっている知り合いに会うことができましたので、陸前高田へはその友人の車を使いました。目的はボランティアではありませんが現地での復興状況を多少なりとも皆さんにお知らせできればと考えました。高田病院周辺を車でまわりましたが、本当に何もない状況でした。ただ、以前の高田市の様子を知らない自分にとっては比較の対象がなく、想像力が働きませんでした。これは、瓦礫の撤去が以前より若干すすんで被災直後よりは復興準備が進んでいることも関係しているかもしれません。

現在、高田病院は別の場所で、仮のプレハブで診療を継続しています。こちらの病院に勤める方の状況を間接的に伺ったところ津波の際には4階屋上に職員、患者の多くが避難したそうです。津波は4階ギリギリまで迫り、多くの人々が身の危険を感じたそうです。また、津波の後も、屋上で一晩過ごし、その間に、状態の悪い患者さんの中には命を落とされた方もいらっしゃるそうです。

私たちは医療のお手伝いをしたわけではありませんが、仮設の高田病院入り口には全国からの医師が交代で支援に訪れている旨の張り紙をみつけました。特に印象に残ったのは小児学会から派遣され交代で勤務に当たられている小児科医の方々です。他の診療科でも学会主導で医師を派遣しているとは思いますが、特に小児科医不足の日本で関係者のご苦労を感じました。

医療からは離れますが、小児に関して、県のボランティアの友人から聞いたところでは、子供の心のケアも大変だということです。些細なことではありますが、今、子供たちのたまり場がないそうです。もともと子供たち、特に思春期の中高生のたまり場的なものが少なかった地域のようですが、震災、津波の影響でファーストフード店や図書館などの公共施設もなくなってしまいました。仮設住宅では親と一緒ですから部屋の中で携帯電話を使い友人と話すことも難しいようです。私たちが車でまわっている間、崩れた港の近くで話し込む中学生を何度か見かけました。たまり場と言うだけでは行政的に予算がつけづらいのも容易に想像できますけれども、子供たちには長期的な心のストレス発散も課題となっているようです。件の友人はその点を中心に奮闘しているそうです。

海岸線が移動したことにより海の中に沈んだ野球場

 

被災した県立高田病院

 

 

 

3.石巻の開業医支援

 

 

今回が日本での支援活動最後の報告となります。

日本帰国後に急遽決まったことですが、石巻の阿部クリニックで日勤および当直の支援活動をしてまいりました。

 

震災から半年たった現在では、阿部クリニック周辺はだいぶ片付けられていましたが住宅街の所々に櫛の歯が欠けたように更地がありました。

阿部クリニックの院長先生の自宅も更地になっておりました。更にクリニック内部の壁には肩の高さのあたりまで津波が押し寄せたことを記録するメモが貼られておりました。

 

クリニックの内装は既にだいぶ奇麗になっていたものの、それでかえって震災後だということを忘れてしまいそうになりました。当然のことながら患者さんの中にはまだまだ精神的に不安定な方も隠れているようですので普段の診療以上に気をつかいました。

 

クリニック自体はフリースタイル分娩を行う施設で、私の当直中に二人のかたの介助をしました。正直申して、私レベルではフリースタイル分娩は急変時の対応が難しいので好きではありませんが、「ありあわせのもので医療を提供する」

しかない状況だと割り切って出来る限りのことをしました。

 

近隣の他の開業医の先生方も被災されて分娩施設がほとんどないようですが幸い近くの日赤がハイリスクに関して引き受けてくださるそうですので、ずいぶん心強かったです。

 

以上が私の経験のまとめです。

初めての施設、震災後半年後の支援には直後の支援とは別の困難がありました。物品が足りない状況ではあっても現地の患者さん達は、徐々に日常診療レベルを期待しつつあります。

診療を日常レベルに戻すためにも行政などからの支援により物品を補う必要をまだまだ感じました。

 

今回多くの方々のお力添えによって被災地を訪問することができました。微力ではありましたがお手伝いできたことは私の中で大きい意味を持ちます。今後も何らかの形で支援に関わらせていただけたらと考えております。ありがとうございました。

2012.1.1 New Beginnings: Volunteering in Ishinomaki

posted Feb 2, 2012, 8:22 AM by BJMRI 事務局   [ updated Feb 2, 2012, 8:24 AM ]

はじめまして — My name is Angela Lee, and I’m a sophomore at Harvard majoring in social anthropology, with a specific interest in mental health in Japan.  This January I joined earthquake relief efforts in Ishinomaki as a member of BJMRI.  In the following posts, I’ve chronicled my experiences, which on the whole were exciting and very rewarding.  I hope to continue helping with all the wonderful work BJMRI does, and I look forward to returning to Japan this summer!

== 

This is my first time in Japan (actually in Asia), and travelling alone was quite the adventure in and of itself.  I arrived at our base in Ishinomaki last night and today is the first day of work in 2012.  I first get the chance to survey the damage that remains 9 months after the earthquake and it is nothing short of striking.  So much has been rebuilt since then – the station at which I arrived, Sendai station, although it had been severely damaged, hosts hundreds of travelers, dozens of shops and endless traffic.  At the coastal community where I work it is likewise evident how remarkable people’s rebuilding efforts have been; here, much of the progress reflects the incredible work the organization with which I am volunteering, Samaritan’s Purse.  Driving to our work site, we pass house after house stripped down to its foundation, ready for rebuilding.  Today we finished another house, on which volunteers had begun work just in December. 

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The beautiful view from our main cabin at about 7 a.m., when we leave for the worksite. 

As a member of the mud-out team, my responsibilities include removing furniture, breaking down walls and floors, scraping out mud from the tsunami, and bleaching the house down.  It is as physically demanding as it sounds but the day passes by quickly; there is never a quiet moment.  I am lucky to work with a weathered staff member, who as a native from Sendai is quite the asset to the team as he doubles as a translator and mud-out leader.  Other volunteers and staff include those from the States like myself, although many have been here for months and some will stay until April, when the project is completed.  Their dedication is unwavering, even in this 0 degree (and sometimes below) weather.  Their compassion speaks to the hearts of relief workers, especially those around long after the media fanfare ends.

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Walls, mud and the like we removed from a house. 

As one volunteer put it, the houses may have been rebuilt but people’s hearts are still hurting.  Yet the homeowners we work with are likewise incredibly considerate, in spite of the damage they have suffered.  The staff member whom I shadow explained that in the beginning, Samaritan’s had a difficult time finding houses to rebuild as families often declined help, urging the volunteers to find those less fortunate than themselves.  As someone who has grown up in the States, I found this fact incredibly striking and believe it speaks volumes of the small cultural differences I have picked up in only my few days here.  Tomorrow we will begin work on another house, where as a team of four we will tear all we can down.  I am excited to get out in the field and learn more about the people who had lived here (now evacuated to temporary housing) in the days to come.

== 

We continue working on the new house.  Unlike the previous house, in which we mainly focused on removing the mud from the tsunami (or “mudding out”), here we are starting from the beginning, which entails breaking down the walls, removing insulation, and the like.  It is striking to see the amount of debris that got stuck behind the walls – there is a distinct line delineating the water levels, above eye level.  There’s this and then the family portraits, clocks, and other items nailed high enough to have escaped damage, hinting at what life used to be.

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The next house we are working on – luckily only the first floor was damaged.

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The water line, at about eye-level.

For two consecutive days, the homeowners come to visit us.  They are a sharply dressed and incredibly kind elderly couple.  It is heartening to know that they have managed to move on; currently they live in temporary housing and have continued to work.  I wish I knew more Japanese but from the little I can gather, they are profuse in expressing their gratitude and bring gifts of food during lunchtime.  Back at the base, we talk about the different homeowners, all of whom likewise have seemed to move on.  There are a fair of stories to suggest otherwise though.  One volunteer mentioned a woman who heard about the tsunami having run back to the office and hearing the radio.  Because the power had gone out, no one else in her town had heard the warning.  Luckily she checked her next door neighbor’s house, however, and rescued their family but still she had to leave the rest of the neighborhood in time to save themselves, knowing which of them were still home.  She did a wonderful thing saving her neighbors yet understandably, she is still distraught. 

Another carpenter mentioned a woman who refused to come back to her house after it had been rebuilt.  While her husband was at work at the time of the tsunami, she was at the house so naturally coming back triggers significant stress.  Her husband spoke with the carpenter team saying that they would move back anyways but I wonder if she will ever feel comfortable coming home.  From what I can tell it is unlikely that she has received any professional help.  Now when I work I can’t help but think of her.

2012.1.7 Reconstruction

posted Feb 2, 2012, 8:21 AM by BJMRI 事務局   [ updated Feb 2, 2012, 8:24 AM ]

My goal for the day is to remove “every nail in the house.”  Somehow by dark, I come pretty close – it’s unfortunately a job much more difficult than it sounds.  A lot of nails have rusted, and there are probably hundreds throughout the house.  My fellow mud-out team members rip down the rest of the walls of the house and begin tearing out the floorboards. 

 

The starting point: floor completely intact

 

Halfway through: paneling and nails removed

End result: all that’s left to do is remove the tsunami mud from underneath

For lunch, the family of one of the homeowners, Abe-san, treats us to homemade udon, onigiri, and Japanese pastries.  As he welcomes us into his house, he tells us about the neighborhood – his best friend from elementary school used to live across the street, the person next door is a university friend – the list goes on and on.  It’s clear he knows just about everyone in a mile-radius, and such a strong sense of community is both new and amazing to me.  His wife, incredibly gracious, watches over us as we eat, refilling our bowls and collecting used utensils and wrappers.  Having the family join us is incredibly heartwarming – sometimes it feels like we are merely working on a construction job as we get so caught up in the practical details but having that connection provides the context that makes this work meaningful. 

==

Another day, for lunch, the homeowner of the first house we worked on, Ashikaga-san, invites the women of the mud-out team – a translator, Yuko, and me – to a room upstairs for lunch.  She begins by saying that the earthquake was worse than World War II.  At the time of the disaster, she was with her family exactly where we were at the moment, watching as the waves came in.  Luckily, everyone made it safely; however, the months that followed proved to be nothing short of taxing.  She and her husband, who suffers from a long-term terminal illness, moved from place to place until over the summer, when they found the temporary housing they live at now.  Her husband had to be taken to the hospital to undergo four surgeries in the first month following the earthquake, including one on his liver – entirely coincidental she says – although the stress from the disaster made it difficult for him to keep any food down during that time. 

While she used to work in rice fields, they were all destroyed by the salt of ocean water so now she spends her time taking care of her husband, growing her own vegetable garden (by which we pass daily), making dolls and meeting with her friends in the community. 

 

A small selection of her handmade dolls

It’s her connections with others, she says, that keeps her afloat.  When I asked about the role of psychiatry and stress in the aftermath, she says that while there were doctors available that did intake at the temporary housing facilities, they weren’t needed.  Together, she says, the victims have moved on, as “if you’re depressed, you can’t do anything.”

One interesting story she offers related to this is about a feature written about her and her life post-earthquake in the Asahi newspaper.  After the article was published, letters and gifts poured in from throughout the country, and she started to correspond regularly with some of them.  Although the piece was published a few months ago, she still talks to one woman over the phone every week (but she hasn’t ever met this woman in person; in fact when she asked for a photo the woman on the other end declined).  Ashikaga-san says that in this sense she’s grateful for the disaster, for giving her the chance to meet other people like the woman on the other end. 

Later a member of the mud-out team tells me that inviting someone to your house, especially somewhere private like an upstairs bedroom is quite meaningful in Japanese culture.  It is very flattering and just wonderful knowing that we can be helpful in more ways than one.

2012.1.16 (If only a brief) farewell

posted Feb 2, 2012, 8:18 AM by BJMRI 事務局   [ updated Feb 2, 2012, 8:25 AM ]

The morning begins with a car crash.  It is snowing heavily and as we drive onto the main road, the truck suddenly swerves and we end up about a foot above a lake.  It is one of those created by the tsunami, still filled with crashed cars and most likely decomposing bodies.  As the truck was spiraling out of control, the only thing I could think of was how difficult it would be to escape the truck once in the ice-covered lake, if it would be possible at all.  We are so beyond lucky that the truck stopped where it did. 

 

The truck, barely above the lake.

It takes a couple hours before it can be towed.  We are lucky that a number of team-members came out with us – they immediately call a towing company and pull in another vehicle from the base.  We are also lucky that neither of us is injured.  In the snow, and in the rural area that we are in, it could be quite some time before we are able to make it to the hospital or a hospital team is able tor each us.  For the rest of the afternoon I am in a bit of shock: it is my first car accident and for a moment I was so sure that we would get hurt, if not die.  I realize the extent to which I cannot even begin to imagine the horror of having been in an earthquake, when waves are rushing forward, high above your head…I am terrified on the way back, with the ice refrozen, that something will happen (thank God nothing does) but I am also a bit grateful to have had that experience.  If anything, I know that it has afforded me more empathy and it made me realize that regardless of how collective of an experience the earthquake was, still the suffering must have been very individual.  The ubiquity of pain has little correlation with its intensity.

On the way to lunch we pass a dead body.  It is my last day on the job yet it is the first time I have seen a body – I don’t think it has anything to do with the earthquake but it’s only a few houses down from where we are working.  The person is knelt before a bench, head down on the seat, and covered in snow.  Regardless of the person’s circumstance, it registers that even though so much has been done to recover by sheer manpower, volition and spirit, much remains.  I know that the staff and volunteers with whom I am working are projected to stay until the end of April but that project deadline has been pushed back a number of times.  They are already hundreds of houses in but there are moments like these when it seems as if the victims have been largely forgotten.

Originally I was interested in going to Japan this winter to study mental health.  However, not only was volunteering an extremely rewarding experience but also I felt like it allowed me to become much more intimate with a single community.  By the end of my time there, I easily recognize families, as they recognize me and the rest of the team.  And as one staffer put it, you can see the difference in their faces from when we first arrive to when we leave – the sense of renewed hope and happiness is almost tangible.  For even this alone, I am proud to have been a part of the relief effort.

2011.9.20: Media "Despair in Japan"

posted Sep 21, 2011, 8:25 AM by mami sato   [ updated Sep 21, 2011, 8:37 AM ]

Dr. Tsugawa was one of panelists for Japan Forum Panel “Recovery and Reconstruction in Japan:  Harvard Reports from the Field” which was organized by Reischauer Institute of Japanese Studies at Harvard University on September, 16th.

Here is the article about the forum on Harvard Gazette;

2011.9.16: Report, Slide Show for Japan Forum Panel "Recovery and Reconstruction in Japan: Harvard Reports from the Field""

posted Sep 21, 2011, 7:48 AM by mami sato   [ updated Sep 21, 2011, 8:34 AM ]

Japan forum Sep 16 2011

2011.7.11: Report "A Report Session with Consulate-General of Japan in Boston"

posted Jul 20, 2011, 6:45 PM by BJMRI 事務局

Boston-Japan Medical Relief Initiative (BJMRI) and Consulate-General of Japan in Boston planned a report session at Consul General’s Residence on Monday, July 11.

 

The sessions started with Mr. Hikihara’s greetings. Five doctors from BJMRI gave a report of what they have done for medical relief activities in Japan. Also, D. Russell S. Phillips, our advisory board, came to the session and gave us a speech.

 

It was great reporting session. We sincerely appreciate Mr. Hikihara (consul general) and Mr. Hirai (consul) for this opportunity.

BJMRI will still continue to support Japan for reconstruction.

 

7月11日、在ボストン日本国総領事館公邸でBJMRI支援活動の報告会を行いました。
報告会は引原総領事の挨拶から始まり、計5名の医師が活動報告をしました。

また、顧問であるDr. ラッセル・フィリップス氏からの挨拶も頂きました。

 
今回はこのような機会を与えてくださった引原総領事および平井領事に感謝しております。

BJMRIは引き続き震災の復興のため現地のサポートをしていきます。

 
 
 
 
Dr. Hashimoto, a founder of BJMRI, introduced general activities of BJMRI and gave a history of how BJMRI was founded.
 
Dr. Izumo talked about his first visit in Soma city in Fukushima in April and also talked about his recent trip to Fukushima prefecture. The purposes of his second trip were to follow up on residents of Minami-Soma City and to measure radioactivity in Fukushima prefecture.
 
 
Dr. Choe, a paediatrician, reported about her medical relief activity with Japan Heart Team. She was dispatched Watanoha districts of Ishinomaki City. She also gave us a story of what she did for her family who lived in Koriyama city in Fukushima.
 

Dr. Hosokawa, a psychiatrist, gave a report of his a month long medical relief activities in Ishinomaki city and Higashi Matsushima city in Miyagi prefecture. He told audience “ What we can do and what we should not do” for the affected area and the victims.

 

Dr. Tusgawa who just returned from his activity at Department of Public Health, Tohoku University. He conducted a health check-up for afflicted individuals at Ogachi city and  Ishinomaki cityt in Miyagi Prefecture with his team and a cohort study of afflicted people, supported by Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare.  
 
 
 

2011.7.14: Report "A Visit to Ishinomaki Shelters"

posted Jul 15, 2011, 9:36 AM by BJMRI 事務局   [ updated Jul 15, 2011, 9:56 AM ]

Below is a report from a doctor who visited and provided medical consultation at Shelters in Ishinomaki city area.
Report is written in Japanese.
 
 
 

東日本大震災 2011.3.11

ボランティア活動報告書

 

  目的:被災地である宮城県石巻市避難所にいらっしゃる被災者の方のニーズに合わせた支援。必要があれば医療相談も同時に行う。

本来は、被災者の方にお風呂に入っていただく支援活動に加え、医療相談を行う予定であったが、用意したお風呂が壊れていることが判明し、予定は変更された。

 

  支援期間:4月18日から4月20日まで薬剤、医療用品、支援物資の準備を行い、20日夜間出発、4月22日までの活動。

 

  集合場所:東京都内

 

  移動手段:レンタカー

 

  参加者:ロジスティック、情報収集、マネージメント担当1人、心理士1人、事務担当1人、医療相談担当1人。

 

  現地での滞在:初日到着時は車内泊、21日は、桃生ボランティア宿泊所、東北関東大震災共同支援ネットワークで滞在の許可取得。

 

  現地での食事:活動中はコンビニエンスストア(時間制限ありで開店し始めたころ)で食事を購入、朝夕は滞在先で、1食200円にて食事可能。

 

  現地での入浴:不能、帰宅時に温泉施設にて入浴。

 

  支援地区:宮城県石巻市 石巻地区(石巻港湾病院)、雄勝地区(明神避難所)、桃生地区(桃生小学校)、河南地区(遊楽館)、牡鹿半島桃浦地区(荻浜小学校)(月浦避難所)、福島県山元町(坂元中学校)http://shelter-info.appspot.com/maps

 

  支援内容:ロジスティック担当員が事前に医療統括の石巻日赤病院にて、支援が行き届いていないと思われる避難所の情報を聴取し、各避難所に問い合わせ、必要な物をあらかじめ調査しました。現地に到着してからは、あらかじめ調査した避難所を訪れたほか、開院していて支援が必要と思われる病院に出向き、現状の把握、支援必要性の有無を確認しました。東京出発前に必要物品を購入し、各地区を巡回し、必要物品の配布、可能であればお話を傾聴し、その際に、健康相談を行い必要に応じて薬、外用薬の配布をしました。

 

  現地の状況:一般の飲食店は開店していませんでしたが、大型スーパー、コンビニエンスストアが時間制限付きで営業を再開していました。ボランティアの入浴は完全ではありませんでしたが、被災者の方のための入浴の供給は始まりつつありました。現地では、生命と最低限の生活が確保され、精神的なダメージからの回復期に入りつつあるところでありました。これからの生活を考え始めたところとのことでしたが、お金も家もすべて失ってしまったため、今後、どうやって日常を取り戻していいのか、行政はどのように助けを出してくれるのか一切わからない、と途方に暮れていらっしゃる様子がうかがえました。

 

  医療:現地から病院へ行くことができない場所を主に巡回しましたが、すでに、組織だった医療が広がりつつあり、週に1度医療チームが巡回しており、基本的に医療は充足していました。避難されている方は、基本的にけがはなく、体調は保たれていました。訴えとしては、被災地の瓦礫などから粉塵や化学物質が舞うことによるものと思われる目のしょぼつきがあり、生理食塩水を配布し目の洗浄を促しました。その他には、地震を思い出してしまい怖くて眠れない、という訴えが多く、眠剤、安定剤の需要が多くありました。

 

  物品の配給:生活必要物品は十分に配布されていたがニーズに即したものではなかったようです。ニーズの中には、嗜好品(お菓子、お酒、たばこ)もありました。たばこはリクエストがあったものの、要求にはお答えできませんでした。

 

  精神的なダメージ:ショックのあまり口をきくことができず、入眠すると悪夢を見てうなされる、その恐怖のため入眠できないという状況が震災後1か月継続していたそうです。私たちが訪問させていただいた頃、ようやく話すことができるようになり、日常会話や恐怖体験の吐露ができるようになったとのことでした。訪問した直後よりも、少しいる間に、いろんな方が徐々に話をしに集まってきてくださり、自主的にお話をしてくださるようになり、数時間の滞在だけでもコミュニケーションの様子に変化をみることができました。

 

  最後に:こころのケアと将来への立て直しの具体的な手段がもっとも必要とされていると思われました。避難所のニーズに合わせた支援を心がけ、少しでも長く滞在し、被災者の方のペースに合わせお話を伺うことによって、ただ一緒にいるだけでも被災者の方が少しでもこころを開いてくださり、どんどん思いを語ってくださったことが、何よりうれしく思いましたし、それが少しでも何かの支援になっていれば、と思いました。

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