Systematic Review of Displacement and Health Impact from Natural Disasters in Southeast Asia

Subin Jang, Yuko Ekyalongo, Hyun Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Disaster-induced displacement is associated with an increased risk of physical and mental health disorders. We aim to understand (1) the magnitude and pattern of natural disasters, affected-population, and deaths by analyzing the surveillance data by the Emergency Events Database and (2) health outcomes by a systematic review of previous studies (1975-2017), which reported physical or mental health outcomes and epidemiological measure of association among population displaced by natural disasters in Southeast Asia. A total of 674 disasters, mainly floods, storms, and earthquakes, occurred between 2004 and 2017. From the systematic review, among 6 studies met inclusion criteria, which focused on mental health (n = 5) and physical health (n = 1). All studies describing mental health resulted from the 2004 tsunami in Ache, Indonesia. We found over 7 times more publications for the disasters in Far East Asia. Selected studies revealed significantly worse mental health outcomes and poor physical health among displaced population compared with nondisplaced population. Despite the alarmingly large population displaced by natural disasters in Southeast Asia, very few studies investigate physical and mental health outcomes of such crisis. Following the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030, researcher and policy-makers have to present more resources toward preventing and mitigating health outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)105-114
Number of pages10
JournalDisaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright © 2020 Society for Disaster Medicine and Public Health, Inc.


  • displacement
  • health impact
  • mental health
  • natural disasters
  • southeast Asia


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