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Medical News & Perspectives
August 2, 2006

Katrina Survivors Strive to Reclaim Their Lives

JAMA. 2006;296(5):499-502. doi:10.1001/jama.296.5.499

Toronto—Planning to rebuild, many evacuees have returned to New Orleans and other coastal areas affected by Hurricane Katrina, which struck on August 29, 2005, and Hurricane Rita, which followed 3 weeks later. Many of them knew someone who died in the storms. Many lost homes, property, and jobs. Some still are separated from families and friends.

“These individuals display enormous resilience,” said Howard Osofsky, MD, PhD, chair of psychiatry at the Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center (LSUHSC) in New Orleans. “Yet many also report feeling demoralized by the slowness of recovery work and the enormity of mile after mile of devastation.”