2015 研究助成 Research Grant Program  /  (A)共同研究助成  (A) Joint Research Grants
(Grant Number)
(Project Title)
Assessment of the Mid- to Long-term Health Effects of Japan's 2011 Fukushima Nuclear Disaster: Toward disaster-resilient health care systems
野村 周平
Shuhei Nomura
Department of Global Health Policy, Graduate School of Medicine, The University of Tokyo
(Grant Amount)
企画書・概要 (Abstract of Project Proposal)


   The towns of Minamisoma and Soma in Fukushima prefecture, Japan, account for one-third of the prefecture's seacoast area. After the Great East Japan tsunami on March 11th 2011 and subsequent Fukushima nuclear disaster, these towns have struggled with medical staffing deficiencies due to post-disaster hospital closures and evacuation of medical personnel, resulting in a collapse of health care service systems. Effective design and delivery of measures to reduce post-disaster health risks and promote health can be achieved by better understanding of the health effects of disasters. However, four years after the Fukushima disaster, most research on post-disaster health outcomes only relates to the first few months after the disaster (i.e., the acute phase), where the public interest was strong enough to call for research; the month/year-long (mid- to long-term) follow-up of health outcomes has not been well conducted.
   In this project, we aim at a stronger understanding of the potential mid- to long-term health effects of the Fukushima disaster as a new social value in order to not only inform the creation of disaster-resilient health care systems after the disaster, but also to help identify discussion points on disaster planning, including preparedness, response and recovery measures for future nuclear disasters. To meet this aim, the project objectives are three-fold: 1) to evaluate trends in internal and external radiation exposure risks among the residents over the past four years; 2) to examine the relationship between the exposure risks and lifestyle, such as dietary habits and physical activity; and 3) to assess the chronic health conditions in the longer term and their risk factors. These objectives will be carried out in collaboration with local authorities and medical facilities in the towns of Minamisoma and Soma.

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