The American Medical Association on Thursday introduced a new medical journal billed as the first of its kind devoted to the science of disaster planning and response.
The peer-reviewed quarterly journal is titled Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness. Its first edition features articles about Hurricane Katrina, the April 19, 1995, Oklahoma City bombing and the December 26, 2004, tsunami in Indonesia.
Deaths and illness from disasters such as these need to be studied to help health professionals better prepare and prevent similar problems in future disasters, said Dr. Kevin Stephens Sr., author of one of the Katrina studies.
Stephens, director of the New Orleans Health Department, wrote about data he said show that Katrina-related deaths and sickness have continued long after the storm passed.
The new journal provides a forum for this type of research and is an unprecedented resource for healthcare professionals in the post-Sept. 11 era, said James James, editor-in-chief and director of the AMA's Center for Public Health Preparedness and Disaster Response.
The journal is published for the AMA by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. -- by the Associated Press