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Open AccessArticle

Current Psychological Distress, Post-traumatic Stress, and Radiation Health Anxiety Remain High for Those Who Have Rebuilt Permanent Homes Following the Fukushima Nuclear Disaster

1
Department of Public Health, Fukushima Medical University School of Medicine, Fukushima 960-1295, Japan
2
Sendai City Mental Health and Welfare Center, Sendai 980-0845, Japan
3
Department of Radiation Health Management, Fukushima Medical University School of Medicine, Fukushima 960-1295, Japan
4
Department of Medicine, Teikyo University School of Medicine, Tokyo 173-8606, Japan
5
Department of Health Informatics, School of Public Health, Kyoto University, Kyoto 606-8501, Japan
6
Toho University, Tokyo 143-8540, Japan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(24), 9532; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17249532
Received: 5 November 2020 / Revised: 11 December 2020 / Accepted: 16 December 2020 / Published: 19 December 2020
Objective: The Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster in 2011 produced psychological reactions among evacuees. Despite the harsh situation, subsequently, there has been gradual progress in reconstruction, with more than half of the evacuees returning after the evacuation. Our hypothesis is that evacuee mental health will now be better due to new stable living conditions. This study aims to clarify the statuses of psychological distress, post-traumatic stress, and radiation health anxiety among evacuees who have rebuilt permanent homes after evacuation. Methods: A cross-sectional questionnaire survey of 1600 residents was conducted in 2020. As primary outcomes, the survey measured psychological distress (Kessler 6), post-traumatic stress (post-traumatic stress four-item checklist), and radiation health anxiety. The data are compared for residents who have rebuilt permanent home and those who did not evacuate. Results: In the co-variant analysis, the statuses of psychological distress (p < 0.001), post-traumatic stress (p < 0.001), and radiation health anxiety (p < 0.001) are found to still be high, with significant differences when compared to those who did not evacuate. These results are still at an equivalent level for the continuing evacuation. Conclusion: Our findings may indicate a necessity for continuing disaster-related mental health activities even though the living conditions have improved. View Full-Text
Keywords: Fukushima nuclear accident; recovery phase; psychological distress; post-traumatic stress; community mental health services Fukushima nuclear accident; recovery phase; psychological distress; post-traumatic stress; community mental health services
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MDPI and ACS Style

Orui, M.; Nakayama, C.; Moriyama, N.; Tsubokura, M.; Watanabe, K.; Nakayama, T.; Sugita, M.; Yasumura, S. Current Psychological Distress, Post-traumatic Stress, and Radiation Health Anxiety Remain High for Those Who Have Rebuilt Permanent Homes Following the Fukushima Nuclear Disaster. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 9532. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17249532

AMA Style

Orui M, Nakayama C, Moriyama N, Tsubokura M, Watanabe K, Nakayama T, Sugita M, Yasumura S. Current Psychological Distress, Post-traumatic Stress, and Radiation Health Anxiety Remain High for Those Who Have Rebuilt Permanent Homes Following the Fukushima Nuclear Disaster. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2020; 17(24):9532. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17249532

Chicago/Turabian Style

Orui, Masatsugu; Nakayama, Chihiro; Moriyama, Nobuaki; Tsubokura, Masaharu; Watanabe, Kiyotaka; Nakayama, Takeo; Sugita, Minoru; Yasumura, Seiji. 2020. "Current Psychological Distress, Post-traumatic Stress, and Radiation Health Anxiety Remain High for Those Who Have Rebuilt Permanent Homes Following the Fukushima Nuclear Disaster" Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 17, no. 24: 9532. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17249532

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