For months after Hurricane Katrina destroyed the home and medical practice of Scott M. Needle, M.D., FAAP, the pediatrician met with patients in a trailer without plumbing.

At the makeshift office in southern Mississippi, he brought children up-to-date on routine immunizations, treated respiratory illnesses that may have been tied to formaldehyde in the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) trailers where many lived and helped children work through stress-related behavioral problems.

Photo courtesy of Scott M. Needle, M.D., FAAP

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina destroyed his medical practice, Scott M. Needle, M.D., FAAP, says he is encouraged by efforts to put children’s needs in the forefront of disaster planning.

Roughly 5,000 children were reported missing after the hurricane, some for months. Even for those still with their families, nutrition wasn’t always easy to come by due to shortages of infant formula and a lack of emergency meals designed for children.


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