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Damian Hoy, Salanieta T Saketa, Roy Roger Maraka, Alison Sio, Ian Wanyeki, Pascal Frison, Divi Ogaoga, Dennie Iniakawala, Cynthia Joshua, Sala Duituturaga, Christelle Lepers, Adam Roth, Paul White, Yvan Souares
Mass gatherings pose public health challenges to host countries, as they can cause or exacerbate disease outbreaks within the host location or elsewhere. In July 2012, the 11th Festival of Pacific Arts (FOPA), a mass gathering event involving 22 Pacific island states and territories, was hosted by Solomon Islands. An enhanced syndromic surveillance (ESS) system was implemented for the event. Throughout the capital city, Honiara, 15 sentinel sites were established and successfully took part in the ESS system, which commenced one week before the FOPA (25 June) and concluded eight days after the event (22 July)...
July 2016: Western Pacific Surveillance and Response Journal: WPSAR
Qanta A Ahmed, Ziad A Memish
Hajj is among the world's largest mass gatherings, drawing between 2 and 3.5 million Muslims from 183 nations annually to perform pilgrimage in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. Infectious disease outbreaks can be imported both into the Hajj population and exported internationally by returning pilgrims. The domestic Saudi population can also be at risk of outbreaks traveling amid this mass migration. With yellow fever reported for the first time in China following the infection of expatriate Chinese workers in Angola and a full blown outbreak underway in wider West Africa, the prospect of yellow fever outbreaks in Asia threatens to impact Saudi Arabia, both during and beyond the Hajj season...
October 17, 2016: Frontiers of Medicine
Dhruv S Kazi, P Gregg Greenough, Rishi Madhok, Aaron Heerboth, Ahmed Shaikh, Jennifer Leaning, Satchit Balsari
BACKGROUND: Planning for mass gatherings often includes temporary healthcare systems to address the needs of attendees. However, paper-based record keeping has traditionally precluded the timely application of collected clinical data for epidemic surveillance or optimization of healthcare delivery. We evaluated the feasibility of harnessing ubiquitous mobile technologies for conducting disease surveillance and monitoring resource utilization at the Allahabad Kumbh Mela in India, a 55-day festival attended by over 70 million people...
September 21, 2016: Journal of Public Health
Emma Paras, Matthew Butler, Brian F Maguire, Rich Scarfone
In September 2015, Pope Francis visited Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and led outdoor events over the course of 2 days. As a result, The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) was faced with the challenge of planning for and responding to a mass gathering that was anticipated to be one of the largest in US history. As a result of unprecedented traffic restrictions, it was anticipated that patients, staff, and vendors would have severe challenges accessing the hospital, along with impaired communications from widespread cell phone service disruption...
September 29, 2016: Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness
Anas A Khan, Eric K Noji
The Hajj is an annual religious mass gathering that takes place in Makkah, Saudi Arabia. The complexity of its system is multidimensional, with religious, political, cultural, security, economic, communication, operational, and logistic unique challenges. This year, yet another stampede tragedy that caused around a 1,000 deaths and severe injuries, capturing worldwide media attention and exacerbating existing political tensions across the Gulf coasts was faced. Planning is important but the planning process is more important, requiring systematic analysis based on accurate collected and targeting root cause factors...
2016: American Journal of Disaster Medicine
Laura G Ebbeling, Eric Goralnick, Matthew J Bivens, Meg Femino, Claire G Berube, Bryan Sears, Leon D Sanchez
OBJECTIVE: Disaster exercises often simulate rare, worst-case scenario events that range from mass casualty incidents to severe weather events. In actuality, situations such as information system downtimes and physical plant failures may affect hospital continuity of operations far more significantly. The objective of this study is to evaluate disaster drills at two academic and one community hospital to compare the frequency of planned drills versus real-world events that led to emergency management command center activation...
2016: American Journal of Disaster Medicine
Nahla Khamis Ibrahim
OBJECTIVE: To describe Zika Virus (ZIKV) epidemiology, current phobia, and the required preparedness for its prevention during the upcoming Mass Gathering (MG) events. METHODS: Electronic databases of PubMed, WHO, CDC, Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), Google, and Cochrane library were extensively searched for ZIKV. Articles were reviewed, scrutinized and critically appraised and the most relevant articles were utilized. RESULTS: ZIKV is an emerging Flavivirus which was first isolated from Uganda in 1947...
July 2016: Pakistan Journal of Medical Sciences Quarterly
Sheila A Turris, Michael Camporese, Samuel J Gutman, Adam Lund
Turris SA , Camporese M , Gutman SJ , Lund A . Mass-gathering medicine: risks and patient presentations at a 2-day electronic dance music event - year two. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2016;31(6):1-2.
September 20, 2016: Prehospital and Disaster Medicine
Dan Todkill, Helen E Hughes, Alex J Elliot, Roger A Morbey, Obaghe Edeghere, Sally Harcourt, Tom Hughes, Tina Endericks, Brian McCloskey, Mike Catchpole, Sue Ibbotson, Gillian Smith
: Introduction In preparation for the London 2012 Olympic Games, existing syndromic surveillance systems operating in England were expanded to include daily general practitioner (GP) out-of-hours (OOH) contacts and emergency department (ED) attendances at sentinel sites (the GP OOH and ED syndromic surveillance systems: GPOOHS and EDSSS). Hypothesis/Problem The further development of syndromic surveillance systems in time for the London 2012 Olympic Games provided a unique opportunity to investigate the impact of a large mass-gathering event on public health and health services as monitored in near real-time by syndromic surveillance of GP OOH contacts and ED attendances...
September 19, 2016: Prehospital and Disaster Medicine
Yasser A Alaska, Abdulaziz D Aldawas, Nawfal A Aljerian, Ziad A Memish, Selim Suner
BACKGROUND: Mass gatherings present enormous challenges for emergency preparedness. Planners must anticipate and prepare for communicable and non-communicable disease outbreaks, illnesses, and injuries to participants, crowd control, and disaster responses to unforeseen natural or man-made threats. The Hajj, the largest annually recurring mass gathering event on earth. It attracts about 3 million pilgrims from over 180 countries who assemble in Mecca over a 1-week period. METHODS: A literature review was conducted using Medline and OVID, while searching for published data concerning human stampedes and crowd control measures implemented to prevent human stampedes...
September 14, 2016: Travel Medicine and Infectious Disease
Alana Hawley, Mathew Mercuri, Kerstin Hogg, Erich Hanel
BACKGROUND: The growing popularity of obstacle course runs (OCRs) has led to significant concerns regarding their safety. The influx of injuries and illnesses in rural areas where OCRs are often held can impose a large burden on emergency medical services (EMS) and local EDs. Literature concerning the safety of these events is minimal and mostly consists of media reports. We sought to characterise the injury and illness profile of OCRs and the level of medical care required. METHODS: This study analysed OCR events occurring in eight locations across Canada from May to August 2015 (total 45 285 participants)...
September 15, 2016: Emergency Medicine Journal: EMJ
Susan P Smith, Joseph F Cosgrove, Peter J Driscoll, Andrew Smith, John Butler, Peter Goode, Carl Waldmann, Christopher J Vallis, Fiona Topham, Michael Monty Mythen
In the past three decades, mass casualty incidents have occurred worldwide at multiple sporting events and other mass gatherings. Organisational safety and healthcare provision can consequently be scrutinised post-event. Within the UK, such incidents in the 1980s provided incentives to improve medical services and subsequent high profile UK-based international sporting events (London Olympics and Paralympics 2012, Glasgow Commonwealth Games 2014, Rugby World Cup 2015) added a further catalyst for developing services...
September 9, 2016: Emergency Medicine Journal: EMJ
Satchit Balsari, P Gregg Greenough, Dhruv Kazi, Aaron Heerboth, Shraddha Dwivedi, Jennifer Leaning
India's Kumbh Mela remains the world's largest and longest mass gathering. The 2013 event, where participants undertook a ritual bath, hosted over 70 million Hindu pilgrims during 55 days on a 1936 hectare flood plain at the confluence of the Yamuna and Ganga Rivers. On the holiest bathing days, the population surged. Unlike other religious, cultural, and sports mass gatherings, the Kumbh Mela's administration cannot estimate or limit the participant number. The event created serious and uncommon public health challenges: initiating crowd safety measures where population density and mobility directly contact flowing bodies of water; providing water, sanitation, and hygiene to a population that frequently defecates in the open; and establishing disease surveillance and resource use measures within a temporary health delivery system...
September 8, 2016: Journal of Public Health Policy
Alimuddin Zumla, Abdulaziz N Alagaili, Matthew Cotten, Esam I Azhar
Media and World Health Organization (WHO) attention on Zika virus transmission at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games and the 2015 Ebola virus outbreak in West Africa diverted the attention of global public health authorities from other lethal infectious diseases with epidemic potential. Mass gatherings such as the annual Hajj pilgrimage hosted by Kingdom of Saudi Arabia attract huge crowds from all continents, creating high-risk conditions for the rapid global spread of infectious diseases. The highly lethal Middle Eastern respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) remains in the WHO list of top emerging diseases likely to cause major epidemics...
2016: BMC Medicine
Lauren M Gardner, Abrar A Chughtai, C Raina MacIntyre
BACKGROUND: Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) emerged from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) in 2012 and has since spread to 26 countries. All cases reported so far have either been in the Middle East or linked to the region through passenger air travel, with the largest outbreak outside KSA occurring in South Korea. Further international spread is likely due to the high travel volumes of global travel, as well as the occurrence of large annual mass gathering such as the Haj and Umrah pilgrimages that take place in the region...
June 2016: Journal of Travel Medicine
Habidah Elachola, Jaffar A Al-Tawfiq, Abdulhafiz Turkestani, Ziad A Memish
Mass gatherings (MG) are characterized by the influx of large numbers of people with the need to have infrastructural changes to support these gatherings. Thus, Public Health Emergency Operations Center (PHEOC) is critical management infrastructure for both the delivery of public health functions and for mounting adequate response during emergencies. The recognition of the importance of PHEOC at the leadership and political level is foundational for the success of any public health intervention during MG. The ability of the PHEOC to effectively function depends on appropriate design and infrastructure, staffing and command structure, and plans and procedures developed prior to the event...
2016: Journal of Infection in Developing Countries
Ziad Memish
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
August 25, 2016: Human Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics
Jeanette J Rainey, Tiffani Phelps, Jianrong Shi
BACKGROUND: Because mass gatherings create environments conducive for infectious disease transmission, public health officials may recommend postponing or canceling large gatherings during a moderate or severe pandemic. Despite these recommendations, limited empirical information exists on the frequency and characteristics of mass gathering-related respiratory disease outbreaks occurring in the United States. METHODS: We conducted a systematic literature review to identify articles about mass gathering-related respiratory disease outbreaks occurring in the United States from 2005 to 2014...
2016: PloS One
Stefan Gogaert, Axel Vande Veegaete, Annelies Scholliers, Philippe Vandekerckhove
First aid (FA) services are provisioned on-site as a preventive measure at most public events. In Flanders, Belgium, the Belgian Red Cross-Flanders (BRCF) is the major provider of these FA services with volunteers being deployed at approximately 10,000 public events annually. The BRCF has systematically registered information on the patients being treated in FA posts at major events and mass gatherings during the last 10 years. This information has been collected in a web-based client server system called "MedTRIS" (Medical Triage and Registration Informatics System)...
October 2016: Prehospital and Disaster Medicine
Gillian E Smith, Alex J Elliot, Sue Ibbotson, Roger Morbey, Obaghe Edeghere, Jeremy Hawker, Mike Catchpole, Tina Endericks, Paul Fisher, Brian McCloskey
BACKGROUND: Syndromic surveillance aims to provide early warning and real time estimates of the extent of incidents; and reassurance about lack of impact of mass gatherings. We describe a novel public health risk assessment process to ensure those leading the response to the 2012 Olympic Games were alerted to unusual activity that was of potential public health importance, and not inundated with multiple statistical 'alarms'. METHODS: Statistical alarms were assessed to identify those which needed to result in 'alerts' as reliably as possible...
July 22, 2016: Journal of Public Health
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