Does the degree of disruption from flooding impact the severity of psychological morbidity? Developing a flooding disruption score
PHE ePoster Library. Emmett H. Apr 9, 2019; 257505; 15405
Dr. Hannah Emmett
Dr. Hannah Emmett
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Abstract Background:
Flooding is a common environmental emergency in the UK which is predicted to increase in frequency and severity. Evidence suggests that the greatest burden of morbidity attributable to flooding is mental ill-health. Better identification of people at risk of mental ill-health following flooding would allow for more directed service provision.Objectives:To develop an aggregate 'flooding disruption score'To assess the predictive value of the score for adverse mental health outcomes following floodingMethods:A review of evidence of the impact of disaster- and flood-related disruptions on mental health outcomes was used to develop the score. Using data from the English National Study of Flooding and Health, the score was tested for its association with self-reported symptoms compatible with probable anxiety, depression, and PTSD, using multivariate logistic regression models.
:The literature review identified 13 relevant papers of which ten were used to inform the disruption score components and weightings. Floodwater in the home, displacement, and loss of essential utilities and services were all associated with an increased risk of probable adverse mental health outcomes. The score is a scale from zero (no flooding or disruption experienced) to 11 (all types of disruption experienced), and includes only data available in an emergency response situation. The score was strongly associated with all probable adverse mental health outcomes, with odds increasing by 1.2-1.3 fold for each unit increase in the score.Conclusion:Disruption secondary to flooding is strongly associated with an increased risk of depression, anxiety, and PTSD. The disruption score can be used as an operational assessment for mental health outcomes following flooding, because it can be constructed using information readily available on the doorstep. Funding This is a non-funded secondary analysis of data collected by and for year one of the English National Study of Flooding and Health.The English National Study of Flooding and Health was funded in part by the National Institute for Health Research Health Protection Research Units (NIHR HPRU) in Emergency Preparedness and Response at King's College London, Environmental Change at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and Evaluation of interventions at the University of Bristol, in partnership with Public Health England (PHE).
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