Tom Kirsch comments on Nepal disaster relief in the Washington Post

05/11/2015

Johns Hopkins Water Institute Faculty Working Group member, Thomas D. Kirsch, M.D., wrote an article in the May 1, 2015 edition of the Washington Post on the persistent lack of data on disaster relief. The article, titled, "We have too little data to know how to help countries like Nepal recover from natural disasters" captures the essence of data in guiding the allocation of funds and relief efforts in the recent earthquake that struck Nepal. 

Kirsch writes that "in medicine, we collect data about what works and what doesn’t. We run experiments; we use scientific evidence to continuously improve our practice and treatments. But in a disaster response, we are so focused on delivering services that there’s hardly any time to collect data."

He mentions that organizations such as the Johns Hopkins Center for Refugee and Disaster Response (which he directs) and the Active Learning Network for Accountability and Performance, have begun to collect data to compare the management of responses and aid relief workers to focus on what works.

The full article by Dr. Kirsch can be found through this link .

Keywords:

Nepal earthquake, disaster relief, Thomas Kirsch MD