60pc city hospitals to fall victim to earthquake
Brac University Vice Chancellor Prof Jamilur Reza Chowdhury yesterday said some 60 percent of the 600 hospitals, clinics and health centres of the city would collapse if an earthquake measuring six to seven magnitude on the Richter scale takes place.
He also said that the hospital buildings should be made in such a way so that it can endure the natural disasters.
Prof Jamil said this at a seminar organised by Disaster Management Bureau in association with Comprehensive Disaster Management Programme (CDMP) to mark the International Day for Disaster Reduction at the National Museum in the city.
“The hospitals should also be prepared to manage the extra pressure of the patients who would come to seek treatment with various casualties following a disaster,” he added.
This year the slogan of the day is 'Hospitals safe from disasters'.
Speakers at the seminar said as the intensity as well as frequency of natural disaster has been increasing day by day due to climate change and Bangladesh is one of the worst victims of this change, it is time to take necessary steps to reduce the vulnerability of natural disasters.
People rush to the hospitals after falling victim to any natural disaster like earthquake, tsunami, cyclone, etc and if the hospitals are not prepared, the casualty would be much higher, they added.
So, it is important to retrofit the hospitals with new architectural design, medical equipment and trained manpower, they said.
Health Minister Prof AFM Ruhal Haque said, “The health complexes vulnerable to natural disasters would be identified and strengthened.”
He stressed the need to continue the community health education programme to make people aware.
Food and Disaster Management Minister Abdur Razzaque said the government has taken programmes worth Tk 69 crore to reduce vulnerability due to natural disaster.
“Retrofitting of two buildings -- Secretariat and Dhaka Medical College and Hospital -- would begin soon,” he said, adding that some 62,000 volunteers would be trained in the disaster-prone areas.
The minister further said that Rajuk and public works ministry have been directed to take stern action against those who would violate the building codes.
Food and Disaster Secretary Mokhlesur Rahman and Farhad Uddin of Disaster Management Bureau also spoke.
Earlier, a colourful rally was brought that started from the Central Shaheed Minar and ended at the National Museum.
Seven reporters were awarded with Disaster Management Media Award 2009 for their special reports on climate change and disaster management.
The awardees are Ashraful Hoque and Chayan Rahman of Ntv, Jannatul Bakeya Keka and Mostafa Mallik of Channel i, Salahuddin Bablu of the Inqilab, Mohammad Selim of the Independent and Mahmud Moni of Chittagong-based the daily Azad.