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Illness and injury

The initial results of a study on the health of seafarers has revealed that almost as many seafarers fell ill than were injured on duty.

The study was a collaboration of Yale University Occupational and Environmental Medicine Program and Future Care, Inc.

The study focused on injury and acute illness in seafarers. It found that illness, as distinguished from injury, accounted for almost half of all medical events (49.8%). Cardiovascular disease accounted for 4.1% of medical events. However, only 2.4% of all seafarers who needed treatment, required admission to hospital.

Christina DeSimone, CEO of Future Care, Inc. commented,

“I am confident that this joint effort will assist in policy development and health prevention strategies for the maritime industry, which will benefit seafarers worldwide.”

The International Christian Maritime Association cares deeply for the health of seafarers. ICMA’s port chaplains assist seafarers to access primary health care in ports. Our chaplains regularly visit seafarers in hospital. Sailors Society provide hospitalised seafarers with hospital packs. The Seamen’s Church Institute has studied the impact of piracy on the mental health of seafarers. Seafarers health concerns are addressed in ICMA’s Seafarers Ministry Training (SMT). ICMA maintains close ties with the International Maritime Health Association, IMHA, and has been invited to attend the upcoming IMHA Conference to be held in June 2013 in Brest, France.