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Australia faces huge rebuild after devastating floods

BMJ 2011; 342 doi: (Published 18 January 2011) Cite this as: BMJ 2011;342:d362
  1. Melissa Sweet
  1. 1Sydney

Australia faces a huge reconstruction effort in the wake of ongoing flooding that is devastating vast swathes of the country and is expected to have a long term effect on the population’s health.

Queensland, “the sunshine state” in the country’s north east, has been hardest hit by the past week’s flash floods, although most states have been affected over the past month, and more heavy rains are forecast.

Three quarters of Queensland has been declared a disaster zone, and the floods there have killed at least 20 people, affected 28 000 homes, and shut down the capital city of Brisbane. Meanwhile the state of Victoria is facing severe flooding, with predictions that 70 towns will be struck this week. Although hospitals have generally managed to continue operations during the crisis, the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners estimates that at least 1000 of …

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