Ethical debates related to the allocation of medical resources during the response to the mass casualty incident at Formosa Fun Coast Water Park

Jing Shia Tang, Chia Jung Chen, Mei-Chih Huang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Disasters are unpredictable and often result in mass casualties. Limited medical resources often affect the response to mass casualty incidents, undermining the ability of responders to adequately protect all of the casualties. Thus, the injuries of casualties are classified in hopes of fully utilizing medical resources efficiently in order to save the maximum possible number of people. However, as opinions on casualty prioritization are subjective, disagreements and disputes often arise regarding allocating medical resources. The present article focused on the 2015 explosion at Formosa Fun Coast, a recreational water park in Bali, New Taipei City, Taiwan as a way to explore the dilemma over the triage and resource allocation for casualties with burns over 90% and 50-60% of their bodies. The principles of utilitarianism and deontology in Western medicine were used to discuss the reasons and rationale behind the allocation of medical resources during this incident. Confucianism, a philosophical mindset that significantly influences Taiwanese society today, was then discussed to describe the "miracles" that happened during the incident, including the acquisition of assistance from the public and medical professionals. External supplies and professional help (social resources) were provided voluntarily after this incident, which had a profound impact on both the immediate response and the longer-term recovery efforts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)105-111
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Nursing
Volume64
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Jan 1

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Mass Casualty Incidents
Resource Allocation
Taiwan
Confucianism
Public Assistance
Ethical Theory
Medical Assistance
Aptitude
Dissent and Disputes
Explosions
Water
Triage
Disasters
Burns
Medicine
Wounds and Injuries
Recreational Parks

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Nursing(all)

Cite this

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Ethical debates related to the allocation of medical resources during the response to the mass casualty incident at Formosa Fun Coast Water Park. / Tang, Jing Shia; Chen, Chia Jung; Huang, Mei-Chih.

In: Journal of Nursing, Vol. 64, No. 1, 01.01.2017, p. 105-111.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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