Hospitals are essential infrastructures in responding to disasters. They are expected to remain functioning during and in the immediate aftermath of disasters. Sri Lanka has experienced a number of natural disasters such as tsunami of 2004, and experienced inadequate disaster preparedness at many local hospitals. However, very limited research has been conducted in Sri Lanka about safe hospital issues. This study attempts to fill this gap by examining disast er preparedness at Matara District General Hospital. When tsunami affected Sri Lanka, this hospital area was devastated, and it remains to be vulnerable to natural disasters.This paper examines how doctors and nurses perceived the preparedness of this hospital by analyzing the results of the questionnaire survey. The results illustrated challenging areas in responding to a large number of disaster victims. Most of the respondents were unaware of the disaster response plan at the hospital. Also, they had not participated in disaster drills. However, almost all the doctors and nurses demonstrated their willingness to improve their knowledge on disaster management and to serve in future disaster situations.
Nimali Lakmini Munasinghe, University of Tsukuba, Japan Matsui Kenichi, University of Tsukuba, Japan