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Tuesday, 13 May 2014

MORE SUPPORT NEEDED: 68% of those suffering from nosebleeds in Japan are children; mothers are the biggest stakeholders PART #2

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Click here for the original Japanese Version of this blog (日本語版はコチラ)

MANY PEOPLE IN JAPAN STILL CONITUNE TO SUFFER FROM NOSEBLEEDING

In the moments before and after the arrival of the powerful typhoon that killed 17 peope in eastern Japan, I sensed that they will be more and more people who will be nosebleeding. Following my senses, I did a simple count on tweets that continue to complain about nosebleeding during the three days from 12:00am 10/15 - 12:00am 10/18.

Impressively enough, there were 359 people complaining about nosebleeds on 10/15 (before and since the typhoon landed) while there were 215 people in 10/16 (after the tyhoon has left), a substantial decrease after the typhoon left. It appears the typhoon has 'blown away' some of the causes of the nosebleeds. The number marked on 10/15 was the second largest accounted since the initial observation conducted during the two week period of 9/20-10/3 (364 people in 9/29)On 10/17, there were 212 people, indicating the number was decreasing or maintaining its level after the typhoon left.


Track data of typhoon #1318
  1. FACT: 359 people tweeted "Can't stop my nosebleed" on 10/15/2013 
  2. FACT: 217 people tweeted "Can't stop my nosebleed" on 10/16/2013 
  3. FACT: 212 people tweeted "Can't stop my nosebleed" on 10/16/2013


"SENSES" CAN BE PROVEN TO BE RIGHT

So my "senses" were right. Even if an observation starts from "sensing" something, you can prove yourself right easily by simply collecting the practical facts. No need of theory or scientifict proof. Of course, my "senses" were backed by my empirical thoughts--through training with my previous observation conducted earlier.
I believe MOTHERS have these senses too, in the name of 'maternal instincts'.
Mothers have these instincts that can feel the danger for their children. These 'senses' cannot be outruled by simply saying that they are "Groundless, or without sufficient proof."  We cannot, and we should not. What we need is something to supplement these 'senses'.
A society that neglects and undermines the cries and pleas of mothers is not a healty society. Those mothers complaining about nosebleeds and other symptoms are genuinely concerned of their children's health and well-being. So intuitively and instinctively, the mothers dig into their past memory with their children; on how and when they became sick and how they were treated and became well. This mother's memory could sometimes be more accurate than any medical records. This is the power of a maternal instinct.
And it turns out their 'senses' are also right.


CHILDREN UNDER 13 ARE THE BIGGEST VICTIMS

MOTHERS OF THOSE CHILDREN ARE THE BIGGEST STAKEHOLDERS 

Athough the results are still very few (81 samples) , through my newly deployed survey (Survey I) I have found the following results. (The actual "Survey I" results)
Of 81 respondents nationwide:
  • FACT: 48% were mothers of children in teens or under 10 (10代未満) + (10代)
  • FACT: 30% were students (学生) 
  • FACT: 3% were infants (乳児)
Of 24 students that accounted for 30% nationwide:
  • FACT: 31% were elementary school students (小学生)
  • FACT: 15% were kindergarteners (園児)

No. of ages Under 10 (10代未満) 
+ Teens (10代) accounted 48% of total
No. of Students  (学生) accounted 30% of total
No.of elementary students (小学生) 

under (幼稚園 and 保育園) accounted 68% of total

Through these findings, however limited in number of total samples taken, we can safely say this: Mothers of these children are the biggest stakeholders of this 'nosebleed epidemic.'
Until I started conducting the series of survey, no one could pinpoint as to who is the biggest stakeholder of the massive number of episodes of nosebleeds and other symptoms reported since the end of September 2013.  But through conducting this survey, we now know who they are, albeit short number of samples.
My hope is to gain momentum for this survey. To empower it, and empower THEM.


SUREVEYS DESIGNED TO EMPOWER STAKEHOLDERS

Survey I began under pitch darkness; without empirically knowing who the stakeholders are at all, it aimed towards helping EVERYONE who suffered from the episodes. Yet still, we have 359 people tweeting in the internet in just one day. We still don't know the exact figures beyond the realm of all Twitter users in Japan (around 13 million nationwide).
Nevertheless, Survey I has produced a concrete result that "mothers of children of age under ten and over have finally voiced their silent outcries" They are the ones who are most victimized by the situation and are those who are crying out for most help. I believe the series of survey I'm conducting will serve to protect and arm these mothers. In particular, the newly released pilot version of "Survey II".

The newly deployed "Survey II" supplements "Survey I" by accumulating past and present data of the episodes of nosebleeds and other symptoms and their diagnosis, treatment, and medication. What it will serve to do is to supplement mothers' memories.
Under Japanese law, the maximum number of years a medical record can be kept is up to 5 years. So mothers can go back at least 5 years to request for these medical records. "Survey II" serves to work as a sort of a 'memo pad' where mothers can travel back 5 years into their memory and official records:  it advises mothers to go back to the medical records and certificates of their children.
By answering to the carefully navigated questions, their responses will be recorded onto an online spreadsheet that can be downloaded upon request for archiving. (10 responses received so far on the pilot version of Survey II in spreadsheet format )


LETS GIVE THEM THE POWER TO VOICE THEIR CONCERNS

The two surveys are not designed for mothers only from the onset. It aims to support all those suffer from the episodes by acting as a supplementary information to be used when inquired by medical institutions and doctors. It aims to give them the power of appeal by supplementing their memories that are often ambiguous that are prone to neglect by the doctors as irrelevant information, so that all those suffer from the various episodes will be able to exercise their right to receive better tests, better diagnosis, and better treatments.
But the fact remains that the surveys are powerless without having a critical mass. We need more people responding to these two surveys. No matter how secure I make these surveys to protect the anonymity of the respondents, they are still very few are willing to voice their situations. Unfortunately, our society is not open enough to allow them. But I want to help make them break out of this deadlock. I want to empower those people who are voicing these silent outcries.
To give these surveys the power they need, and to empower those people who are just beginning to voice their "silent outcries", to help the Japanese children, the people, please spread the word of these surveys to your friends in Japan, ask them to post it on their blogs, Facebook, tweet about it, discuss it on listserves, or even personal websites. We desperately need your help.
Thank you. 
Takahiro Katsumi ("Taka")
Founder of this survey, activist and owner, Office BALÉS
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