Massive flood in Arkansas
According to the U.S. Geological Survey (2015) flooding of Arkansas river has been the worst since 1990. Starting on Christmas evening, the flooding followed heavy rainfall that reached 10 inches in western and northern parts of Arkansas. More than 40 counties were affected by flood that caused wide-spread damage. As the river remained high for several days, the flooding actively spread to neighboring states, such as Tennessee, Mississippi and Alabama (Hardy, 2015). Major causes of deaths and injuries tended to deal with drowning and falling trees. The injuries took place at different moments throughout the day. On December 26th five people experienced serious injuries in Benton County.
Alice, 15 is a White, fully capable of using English. The girl came to Arkansas to celebrate Christmas with her grandparents. The girl was injured by a falling tree just near the local hospital. Thus, she was brought to the hospital by its employees at 11 a.m. on December 26th, and was one of the first victims of the flood. The girl suffered compound fracture of her left arm, concussion and had some sawdust in both eyes. Furthermore, she was extremely frightened and refused to speak. The situation was aggravated by the fact that Alice suffers from type I diabetes, and takes rapid-acting insulin (usually NovoLog or FlexPan). Alice fell unconscious soon after coming to the hospital, because she did not manage to inform staff about her condition and needed medication. Alice has a full family to be contacted.
Ben, 48 is an African-American, also fully capable of using English. He permanently resides in Benton County. On December 25th, Ben went out to check whether everything was ok with his car and was hit by a massive wave. He fell down and lost his consciousness. Thereafter Ben spent some time in cold water, and barely managed to reach his home. In the morning Ben started to feel strong headache, hearing disorders and nausea and called an ambulance. He was brought to the hospital at 9.30 a.m. on December, 26th. Ben was diagnosed a closed craniocerebral injury. He also suffered from undercooling. Ben does not have a family.
Lee, 16 is a Chinese, who came to the U.S. as an exchange student. She speaks English well. Lee did not live the home of the Browns, a family she stayed with and, thus, did not suffer physical injuries. However, she suffered an extremely strong shock due to a fear of being far from home during a disaster and unable to contact her parents. She was brought to the hospital at 10 a.m. on December, 26th, and immediately diagnosed a cardiogenic shock. The symptoms included tachycardia and low blood pressure. Apart from receiving diagnosis-specific treatment (including psychological aid), Lee also required allergic emergency medication (Adrenaclick 0.15) due to an asthma attack that she has experienced already in hospital. The Browns can be contacted in case of emergency.
Kevin, 73, is a White man, who was brought to the hospital by an ambulance at 9 a.m. on the 26th of December. He suffered hypovolemic shock, characterized by a range of symptoms, such as a rapid, weak pulse, hypothermia, extreme thirst and insufficient perfusion of the skin. Despite his age, Kevin does not suffer from chronic conditions. He does not have a family.
Diana, 31, is an African American woman, fully capable of using English. She was brought to hospital by an ambulance, accompanied by her husband, at 3 a.m. on 26th December. Diana had all symptoms of premature birth, and required immediate aid. As Diana suffers from a severe chronic hearing impairment, she requires specific treatment.
Ensuring system capacity under flood requires presence of a broad range of specialists in hospitals (including midwifes) and an ability to treat each patient in complex (e.g., simultaneously address both physical and mental problems).
Hardy, B. (2015). As near-record flooding continues, Arkansas River to exceed levels seen this spring. Retrieved 6 February 2016 from http://www.arktimes.com/ArkansasBlog/archives/2015/12/29/as-near-record-flooding-continues-arkansas-river-to-exceed-levels-seen-this-spring