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Dr Erin Smith

Senior Lecturer, Paramedical Science

Contact Information Mobile: 0408148749, Email:, Campus: ,
Staff Member Details
Mobile: 0408148749


Erin is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Medical and Health Sciences and is the Course Coordinator for the Master of Disaster and Emergency Response.

Current Teaching

  • DER6101 – Introduction to emergency management
  • DER6102 – Disaster preparedness
  • DER6103 – Major incident management
  • DER6104 – Disaster health practice and humanitarian relief
  • DER6105 – Psychological effects of disaster
  • DER6101 – Advanced disaster management response
  • DER6107 – Disaster recovery
  • MMP6100 – Evidence based practice
  • MMP6101 – Research proposal preparation and research methods
  • MMP6102 – Medical science masters project


Dr Erin Smith has extensive experience teaching and researching within the multidisciplinary fields of prehospital and disaster health.  Dr Smith’s PhD research conducted through the Faculty of Medicine at Monash University explored paramedic perception of risk and willingness to work during disasters.  This research involved conducting interviews and focus groups with nearly 100 paramedics in Australia, New York and London.  Most recently, Dr Smith has completed a fifteen-year follow up of medics who responded to the 9/11 terrorist attacks in New York.  This research involved interviewing 54 medics at five-year milestones following the attacks exploring the long-term physical and psychosocial health impacts on the medics. Dr Smith is widely published in both the prehospital and disaster health literature and has presented her research at many national and international conferences where she has been an invited presenter and a best-presentation award winner.

Professional Associations

Dr Erin Smith is the Deputy Chair of the World Association for Disaster Medicine’s (WADEM) Oceania Chapter. She is also a Research Committee Member and a member of the Psychosocial Committee of WADEM. Erin is also a  member of the Emergency Services and Disaster Special Interest Group of the American Public Health Association. Erin was an Executive Board Member of the Cochrane Collaboration’s Prehospital and Emergency Health Field (CPEHF).

Research Areas and Interests

Dr Smith’s primary area of research interest is the long-term physical and mental health impact on 9/11 medics. Dr Smith also has an interest in exploring acceptable standards of care for emergency health professionals during disasters and emerging health threats.  Most recently Erin has been investigating altered standards of care for emergency responders during public health crises.


  • Doctor of Philosophy, Monash University, 2009.

Recent Publications (within the last five years)

Journal Articles

  • Ryan, BJ., Franklin, RC., Burkle, FM., Smith, E., Aitken, P., Watt, K., Leggat, PA., (2017), The role of environmental health in understanding and mitigating postdisaster noncommunicable diseases: The critical need for improved interdisciplinary solutions. Journal of Environmental Health, 80(5), 38-48, Denver, USA, Naitonal Environmental Health Association.
  • Ryan, B., Franklin, R., Burkle, F., Smith, E., Aitken, P., Watt, K., Leggatt, P., (2017), Ranking and prioritizing strategies for reducing mortality and morbidity from noncommunicable diseases post disaster: An Australian perspective. International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction, 27(March 2018), 223-238, Amsterdam, Netherlands, Elsevier BV, DOI: 10.1016/j.ijdrr.2017.10.009.
  • Ryan, B., Franklin, R., Burkle, F., Smith, E., Aitken, P., Watt, K., Leggat, P., (2017), Reducing Non-communicable Disease Exacerbation after a Disaster. Prehospital and Disaster Medicine, 32(1), 194-195, New York, USA, Cambridge University Press, DOI: 10.1017/S1049023X17005106.
  • Ryan, BJ., Franklin, RC., Burkle, FM., Watt, K., Aitken, P., Smith, E., Leggat, P., (2016), Defining, describing, and categorizing public health infrastructure priorities for tropical cyclone, flood, storm, tornado, and tsunami-related disasters. Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness, 10(4), 598-610, Cambridge University Press, DOI: 10.1017/dmp.2016.3.
  • Ryan , B., Franklin, R., Burkle , F., Aitken, P., Smith, E., Watt, K., Leggatt, P., (2016), Reducing Disaster Exacerbated Non-Communicable Diseases Through Public Health Infrastructure Resilience: Perspectives of Australian Disaster Service Providers. PLoS Currents, 8(Disasters), 27p., DOI: 10.1371/currents.dis.d142f36b6f5eeca806d95266b20fed1f.
  • Whelan, J., Love, P., Romanus, A., Pettman, T., Bolton, K., Smith, E., Gill, T., Coveney, J., Waters, E., Allender, S., (2015), A map of community-based obesity prevention initiatives in Australia following obesity funding 2009-2013. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health, 39(2), 168-171, Victoria, Australia, Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, DOI: 10.1111/1753-6405.12296.
  • Ryan, B., Franklin, RC., Burkle, FM., Aitken, P., Smith, E., Watt, K., Leggat, P., (2015), Identifying and describing the impact of cyclone, storm and flood related disasters on treatment management, care and exacerbations of non-communicable diseases and the implications for public health. PLoS Currents, 7(Disasters), September 28, 2015, United States, Public Library of Science, DOI: 10.1371/currents.dis.62e9286d152de04799644dcca47d9288.
  • Ryan, BJ., Franklin, RC., Burkle, FM., Watt, K., Aitken, P., Smith, E., Leggat, P., (2015), Analyzing the impact of severe tropical cyclone Yasi on public health infrastructure and the management of noncommunicable diseases. Prehospital and Disaster Medicine, 30(1), 28-37, United States, Cambridge University Press, DOI: 10.1017/S1049023X1400137X.
  • Whelan, J., Love, P., Pettman, T., Doyle, J., Booth, S., Smith, E., Waters, E., (2014), Cochrane Update: Predicting sustainability of intervention effects in public health evidence: Identifying key elements to provide guidance. Journal of Public Health, 36(2), 347-351, Oxford, United Kingdom, Oxford University Press, DOI: 10.1093/pubmed/fdu027.
  • Smith, E., (2014), Willingness to work during a terrorist attack: A case-study of first responders during the 9/11 World Trade Centre terrorist attacks. Australasian Journal of Paramedicine, 6(1), 11p., Melbourne, Victoria, Paramedics Australasia.
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