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Successful Hospital Evacuation After the Kumamoto Earthquakes, Japan, 2016

  • Takashi Nagata (a1), Shinkichi Himeno (a2), Akihiro Himeno (a2), Manabu Hasegawa (a3), Alan Kawarai Lefor (a4), Makoto Hashizume (a1) (a5), Yoshihiko Maehara (a6) and Masami Ishii (a7)...


Two major earthquakes struck Kumamoto Prefecture in Japan in April 2016. Disaster response was immediately provided, including disaster medical services. Many hospitals were damaged and patients needed immediate evacuation to alternative facilities. The hospital bed capacity of Kumamoto Prefecture was overwhelmed, and transportation of more than 100 patients was needed. Hospital evacuation was carried out smoothly with the coordinated efforts of multiple agencies. The overall operation was deemed a success because patients were transported in a timely manner without any significant adverse events. Upon repair of facilities in Kumamoto Prefecture, patients were returned safely to their previous facilities. The management of inpatients after this natural disaster in Kumamoto Prefecture can serve as a model for hospital evacuation with multi-agency coordination in the future. Future efforts are needed to improve interfacility communications immediately following a natural disaster. (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2017;11:517–521)


Corresponding author

Correspondence and reprint requests to Takashi Nagata, MD, PhD, Kyushu University, Faculty of Medical Sciences, Department of Advanced Medical Initiatives, Fukuoka, Japan (e-mail:


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Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness
  • ISSN: 1935-7893
  • EISSN: 1938-744X
  • URL: /core/journals/disaster-medicine-and-public-health-preparedness
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