Public Release: 

Community-level resources may affect residents' mental health following a natural disaster

Wiley

In a study on the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, residents of communities with high unemployment were at elevated risk of disaster-related post-traumatic stress, but only when individuals were assessed 25-28 months post-disaster and not when they were assessed 13-16 months post-disaster.

The results suggest the need for ongoing support to economically disadvantaged communities in which residents have endured disaster-related stressors.

"Our study demonstrates that we need to remember disaster-affected communities, particularly those with pre-existing socioeconomic vulnerabilities. These communities might continue to need assistance years after the disaster took place," said Dr. Sarah Lowe, lead author of the Journal of Traumatic Stress study.

###

Disclaimer: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert system.