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Lessons Learned from the Sumatra Earthquake and Tsunami in 2004

Dr. Achir Yani S. Hamid, a director of the board of professor at Faculty of Nursing University of Indonesia and also as a director of advisory board for the Indonesian National Nurses Association (INNA), came to University of Kochi on December 9-12, 2015. Dr. Yani delivered lectures titled “The Role of Nurses in Mid-Long Term Care after the Sumatera Earthquake and Tsunami in 2004” which was open to the graduate students at University of Kochi. In her presentation, Dr. Yani explained that on December 26, 2004, a 9.0 magnitude earthquake and tsunami caused extensive damage in Aceh, Sumatra Island, Indonesia. There was no emergency response plan in place in Aceh. Communications and transportation systems were disrupted. Staff records were lost. Nurses lacked uniforms, basic medical supplies, transportation, and housing. It was recognized that Indonesia needs a national public health nurse leadership committee, established emergency procedures and disaster training, and a single national coordinator for distribution of supplies. On other day, four DNGL students had a private consultation session with Dr. Yani. Firstly, Ms. Morosawa consulted about “The Impact of Radiation Disaster in Fukushima”. Next, Ms. Nishigawa consulted “The Preparation for Natural Disasters among Tomohon City Residents in North Sulawesi, Indonesia”. Then, Ms. Nojima consulted “The Holistic Care for Loss and Grief Resulting from Disasters”. And the last, Mr. Dwinantoaji consulted “The Health Problems and Needs Related to Community in Volcanic Hazards Affected Areas”. In addition, Dr. Yani with the professors and DNGL students visited the Misato Area and gave presentation to share her experiences to local residents about the condition after tsunami in Aceh in 2004. Then, we visited the evacuation center and tsunami tower which prepared for anticipation from the impact of tsunami by Nankai Trough Earthquake. In the event of great Nankai Earthquake, Kochi Prefecture is expected to face extensive tsunami damage. The challenge for nurses is to become involved in disaster mitigation, serve on local, regional, and national disaster planning organizations, promote education and organize regular drills for readiness, and consider the value in working with victims to resolve shortages at the scene. Nurses have a major role in mitigating disasters and to increase individual and community resilience.