A Pilot Study of the Impact of the Asian Tsunami on a Group of Asian Media Workers

So Sin Sim, Yiong Huak Chan, Angelina Chan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearch


The Asian Tsunami that struck on December 26, 2004, claimed tens of thousands of lives. Tobring up-to-date news to the public, many media workers raced to the frontline. Singapore journalistswere among the first to arrive at the devastated scenes of the affected countries. Critical Incident StressDebriefing (CISD) was offered to these media personnel about a week after they returned from assignment.Twelve of the media workers participated in the CISD and also completed the General Health Questionnaire(GHQ-28), The Impact of Events Scale (IES), and a feedback questionnaire on what was helpful to themduring the debriefing. Twenty-five percent of the respondents displayed psychiatric symptoms (GHQ-28score > 5) with highest scorings being in the somatic domain. One third had IES > 30 with higher scoreson the avoidance scale. Seventy-five percent of the participants indicated moderate (8.6 – 19) to high (>19.0) total scores on the IES. All the participants reported that CISD was valuable. This pilot studyprovides support for the need to address the emotional aftermath of impacted media workers in the wakeof disasters.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)299-306
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Emergency Mental Health
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2005
Externally publishedYes

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