Mass Casualty Incident and their Psychological Impact

Bali Nightclub Bombings, Indonesia (2002)

Bali Nightclub bombing is an incident that took place on 12th of October 2001. Two bombs blasted a few minutes past 11 pm on Bali Island in Indonesia. The blast completely destroyed two bars in the Kuta Beach in the holiday resort in the tourist district. The explosion resulted to the death of about 202 individuals who originated from 21 different nations. In this case, over 300 individuals were also injured. Tourists were the most affected individuals in this blast. The injured were assisted by a number of volunteers who took a number of the casualties to various clinics and hospitals on Bali. Most of the casualties were treated at Sanglah General Teaching Hospital at the Bali largest hospital. Initially the casualties were taken care of by the hospital staffs as well as the volunteers. However, there was reinforcement in terms of the medical personnel from different hospitals in Indonesia and international hospitals (Brookes et al., 2014).

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Most individuals who were directly affected by the Bali bombing were psychologically affected. They witnessed a lot of unfolding which include the death of their friends or other people who they were faming fun with. They also experienced injuries and fear of death. Some got unconscious and even lied next to dead people who were only pronounced dead in the emergency room. Moreover, there were no paramedics to give them any good attention and thus, the incident created tension, confusion and uncertainty. In this regard, most directly involved individual were anxious and they most suffered from posttraumatic stress disorder later on. Among the common symptoms demonstrated by these individuals include nightmares, intrusive memories, development of negative thoughts regarding tourisms, change of emotional reactions, and reacting to any small sound that demonstrate danger in their surroundings and the feeling of insecurity (Stevens et al., 2013).

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The incident also impacted those that are indirectly affected by the incident. This includes family members, friends, colleagues and countrymen of the victims. Some of these psychological impacts include development of touring fear, development of stress based on the need for money to assist with treatment and to assist the victims related to them to receive proper treatment as well as proper counseling. They also suffered from fear of uncertainty and thus, turning to be anxious since no one was sure of the fate of their beloved ones. The family members experienced a state of confusion due to lack of exact information regarding the situation or the status of their loved ones. Accepting the new life after the incident which includes living without a family member, friend or colleagues for those that lost their loved ones and living with the injuries impacts and disabilities for those who survived the attack also resulted to the development of stress and to some extent depression (Brookes et al., 2014).

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Basically, the treatment of each victim depends on the specific injuries that a patient incurred. However, it is important to realize that all individuals who were directly involved in the incident were traumatized in one way or another. In this regard, apart from the medical or physical treatment, the victims will require psychological therapy that will enable them to overcome the psychological problems that developed as a result of the incident. This will also help them accept the new changes that came about as a result of the incident, and accept the new normal. This includes any form of disability or loss associated with the incident and that the victims or the family members have to live with. Thus, a continuous therapy would be highly required among the incident survivors and their family members to assist them overcome the shock, to heal from PTSD and other psychological conditions, and also to ensure that their life perception is not highly influenced by the incident.

Natural MCI: Tsunami, Indian Ocean (2004)

Indian Ocean Tsunami took place on 26th of December 2004. The Tsunami was initiated by an earthquake which was believed to contain 23, 000 energy of Hiroshima-type atomic bombs. The earthquake had 9.0 magnitude quakes, with its epicenter situated in the Indian Ocean close to the Sumatra west coast. The aggressive movement of the tectonic plates of earth displaced a huge volume of water, passing strong shock waves in all directions. The rupture was over 600 miles long, relocating the seafloor a few yards vertically and horizontally by 10 yards. This resulted to movement of rock measuring trillions tons resulting to the biggest magnitude earthquake in a period of 40 years. The Tsunami was very destructive. It is approximated that it caused the death of 230,000 people. There was also an extensive destruction of properties where more than 500000 individuals were left homeless where approximately a third of the casualties were children. The Tsunami created a great change in the life of people living along the Indian Ocean coast with destruction of properties, loss of life and injuries among other changes.  People displacement resulted to scattering of families and thus, most people were left without families (Frankenberg et al., 2008).

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The Tsunami created great distress to the victims since they lost a lot in life. The loss of life left most children without parents, parents without children, villages completely destroyed. This resulted to great trauma since most of them had to be relocated and to continue with life without what they lost. The main psychological symptoms for the victims were stress and depression. Other symptoms include panic disorder particularly among children, schizophreania, posttraumatic stress disorder, and anxiety or fear of the unknown (Agustini & Matsuo, 2012).

The incident will also impact the psychological health of the victims that were not directly affected such as friends, family members, neighbors and others with one or more association with the victims. One of their major psychological conditions includes stress and anxiety due to uncertainty regarding the condition of their friends, families and their close associates. In addition, the family members will experience the fear of the unknown due to the uncertainty of the news that they are most likely to receive regarding their loved ones (Frankenberg et al., 2008).

The long term treatment plan for the victims include assisting them with material needs, social needs, and physical needs before considering providing them with psychological needs. Basically psychological wellbeing is enhanced by providing the victims with a new life, a place to live in; food, medical attention and social or new community where one can fell secured. After all this, the victims will be engaged in a psychological therapy which will include personal counseling, group or community therapy, and family therapy based on individual losses. This is a process that will take place for a while to ensure that victims have accepted what happened, their losses and that they have accepted it and that they are ready to move on.

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