Online Program

Ethics of public health in disaster response and management in China

Monday, November 4, 2013

Junmin Zhou, Department of Health Promotion, Social & Behavioral Health, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, NE
Background: China has experienced two major earthquakes in Sichuan province in 2008 and 2013. A large number of people (nearly 70000 in 2008, 200 in 2013) died during the two disasters according to official data. Ample researchers focused on disaster management and reconstruction after this, and earthquake prediction also becomes a highly hot topic. However, the concept of “ethics of public health” has never been mentioned in this area. Hence, ethics of public health in disaster response and reconstruction are very significant and worthwhile, since it not only can provide awareness to the society, but also attract more people to discuss public health in disaster. Method: Even though resources for investigation are limited in both English and Chinese, official data from both governments and organizations could be helpful. In addition, Sichuan University just established institute for disaster management and reconstruction, which could provide a great amount of information. Furthermore, ethics of public health in developed countries (e.g. USA) own guiding significance. Questions need to be addressed: 1. Have any similar ethics in public health related areas? 2. What philosophies are affecting current situation in China? 3. What are the principal guidelines for public health in disaster response and management in China? Conclusion: Public health is playing more and more important role in disaster response and management. Therefore, discussing ethics of it could offer us more opportunities to think and act reasonably, especially for China – a large developing, crowded and having frequent disaster country.

Learning Areas:

Ethics, professional and legal requirements
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Identify possible ethics problems of public health in disaster response and management in China. Discuss principal guidelines for public health in disaster response and management in China.

Keyword(s): Disasters, Ethics

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a PhD student who are very interested in disaster response and management in public health area. Also, I have been a volunteer in disaster area for several times and have some experiences. Furthermore, I worked for Center for Preparedness Education in our university and know the difference in this area between America and China.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.