Mental health care for those affected by prolonged evacuation following the Noto Peninsula earthquake on Jan. 1 has become a major issue, with people experiencing sleep deprivation, fear of strong aftershocks, worsening dementia, and in some cases, suicidal thoughts.

The disaster psychiatric assistance team (DPAT) secretariat of the Japan Psychiatric Hospital Association has called on people to make contact it if they have problems, noting that it can connect them to appropriate organizations.

An elementary school in the city of Suzu, Ishikawa Prefecture, temporarily housed up to around 800 evacuees after the 7.6 magnitude quake. About 90 people, whose homes were destroyed or severely damaged, remain there, and about 40% of them are age 65 or older.