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Disaster Preparedness in Hospitals in the Middle East: An Integrative Literature Review

  • Abdullah Alruwaili (a1), Shahidul Islam (a1) and Kim Usher (a1)


Disasters occur rarely but have significant adverse consequences when they do. Recent statistics suggest that millions of lives and billions of US dollars have been lost in the last decade due to disaster events globally. It is crucial that hospitals are well prepared for disasters to minimize their effects. This integrative review study evaluates the preparedness level of hospitals in the Middle East for disasters using the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines. The key terms include disaster preparedness OR disaster management OR emergency response AND Middle East AND hospitals. The study reviews articles published between January 2005 and December 2015, which focused on the hospitals’ preparedness for disasters in the Middle East nations. Based on their meeting 5 eligibility criteria, 19 articles were included in the review. Twelve of the articles focused on both natural and man-made disasters, whereas 6 of them were based on mass casualty events and 1 on earthquake. Thirteen of the reviewed articles ranked the level of preparedness of hospitals for disasters to be generally “very poor,” “poor,” or “moderate,” whereas 6 reported that hospitals were “well” or “very well prepared” for disasters. Factors affecting preparedness level were identified as a lack of contingency plans and insufficient availability of resources, among others. (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2019;page 1 of 11).


Corresponding author

Correspondence and reprint requests to Abdullah Alruwaili, School of Health, University of New England, Armidale, NSW 2351, Australia (e-mail:


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Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness
  • ISSN: 1935-7893
  • EISSN: 1938-744X
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