Psychiatric Diagnoses and Medications for Hurricane Harvey Sheltered Evacuees

Abstract

To report on the diagnosis of and pharmacological services provided to 229 evacuees of Hurricane Harvey housed within a large convention center. Retrospective chart review of services rendered. Evacuees were primarily adults who presented with varied diagnoses, most commonly mood, anxiety and/or psychotic disorders. There was significant need for medications and psychosocial support to address preexisting conditions, as well as emerging problems (e.g., insomnia). Individuals presenting for pharmacological services following natural disasters may require medications to continue ongoing care, and/or treatment for insomnia. Therapists can provide direct intervention as well as identify those in need of further evaluation/intervention. Providers should be prepared with a fully stocked pharmacy, accessible but confidential location, and a pre-established method of record keeping.

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Acknowledgements

We acknowledge the contribution of Sandra Cepeda.

Funding

Dr. Storch has received research support from NIH and All Children’s Hospital Research Foundation and royalties from Wiley, Elsevier, American Psychological Association, Springer, and Lawrence Erlbaum. He is a consultant for Levo Therapeutics. Dr. Goodman has received research funding from NIH, the Simons Foundation, and Biohaven Pharmaceuticals. The other authors report no financial relationships with commercial interests.

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Correspondence to Eric A. Storch.

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Storch, E.A., Shah, A., Salloum, A. et al. Psychiatric Diagnoses and Medications for Hurricane Harvey Sheltered Evacuees. Community Ment Health J 55, 1099–1102 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10597-019-00378-9

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Keywords

  • Natural disaster
  • Hurricane
  • Flood
  • Pharmacotherapy