Policymakers’ perspectives on responding to the elderly’s mental health needs in post-disaster situations

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  • Ferry Efendi
    Faculty of Nursing, Universitas Airlangga, Surabaya, Indonesia.
  • Retno Indarwati
    Faculty of Nursing, Universitas Airlangga, Surabaya, Indonesia.
  • Gading Ekapuja Aurizki
    Faculty of Nursing, Universitas Airlangga, Surabaya, Indonesia.
  • Ika Adelia Susanti
    Faculty of Nursing, Universitas Airlangga, Surabaya, Indonesia.
  • Antoni Eka Fajar Maulana
    Nursing Department, Mataram College of Health Sciences, West Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia.


Background: Mental health issues following the occurrence of disaster remain neglected area especially for older people group. The purpose of this study was to explore stakeholders’ perspectives on post-disaster management related to the elderly’s mental health needs.

Design and Methods:
 This qualitative case study was conducted between June and October 2020. The investigators conducted in-depth interviews with policymakers who were in charge of disaster management at national, provincial, and regional levels. The policymakers were selected through purposive sampling. A policy analysis was conducted by the investigators to answer the research question.

 The results were presented based on actor, content, context, and process. The actors engage in intersectoral collaboration between disaster agencies, health agencies, and social agencies. The content is largely comprehensive; however, the disaster management policy should not neglect to address mental health conditions after a disaster event. The context is the vulnerability and risk of the elderly in terms of experiencing physical and mental issues after a disaster, which should be considered by policymakers in Indonesia. The process is the development of disaster management policies, which are influenced by cultural, economic, political, and international factors.

This study reveals that stakeholders need to pay attention to the mental health issue of elderly in national and regional policy, particularly during post-disaster situations. In addition, posttraumatic stress in post-disaster situations should be highlighted in order to formulate a better aged care policy.


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