Atlanta—Several teams of mental health
professionals—few, if any, of whom spoke any Asian language—rushed
from the United States, Italy, Sweden, and other countries to Sri Lanka and
Indonesia in early January to offer counseling to survivors of the tsunami
that had ravaged coastal regions of South Asia and East Africa on December
The tsunami had razed homes, hospitals, businesses, schools, roads,
bridges, and communication systems; destroyed food supplies and crops; contaminated
drinking water; and killed livestock. The visitors needed housing, food, transportation,
and translators, all scarce in the aftermath of the 100-foot-high tidal wave
that killed at least 300 000 individuals, injured more than 500 000,
and displaced more than 1 million.
Lamberg L. As Tsunami Recovery Proceeds, Experts Ponder Lessons for Future Disasters. JAMA. 2005;294(8):889–890. doi:10.1001/jama.294.8.889
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