[How deaf people cope in routine and emergency situations - suggested paths for thought and action]

Harefuah. 2014 Sep;153(9):532-6, 558.
[Article in Hebrew]


Deaf people have unique characteristics and needs. There is a limited amount of research regarding the needs of deaf people, and no studies were found concerning deaf people in emergency situations. The absence of the sense of hearing in deaf people is only one component of the complexity of their world. Many factors contribute to this complexity, but the most striking is the means of communication between the deaf and the hearing person and vice versa. Changes during emergency situations present a challenge for hearing individuals, and even more so, for deaf people. Deaf individuals experience difficulty in obtaining and transmitting information, accessing care and more. These difficulties often result in the dependency of the deaf person on others. The State of Israel enacted laws targeted to facilitate the access of individuals with disabilities in general, and deaf people in particular, to public services. In emergencies, the Home Front Command and the Ministry of Social Welfare distribute pagers to the deaf population, as a device to communicate warning alerts. However, these devices do not fulfil the need for accessible care, bi-directional flow of information, and additional needs that arise during times of emergency. The deaf population is a cultural minority, whose needs in emergency situations are unknown. Familiarity with the deaf population is the first step towards improving treatment and communication that are apt for this population. This paper reviews what is known in the literature about this topic and presents an attempt to bridge the gap of knowledge and barriers to communication between the deaf population and

Publication types

  • English Abstract
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological*
  • Communication*
  • Disabled Persons
  • Emergencies
  • Health Services Accessibility
  • Humans
  • Israel
  • Persons With Hearing Impairments*