The results of this survey are characteristic of a fundamental problem in humanitarian relief. There have been several reports detailing substantial shortcomings in the delivery of humanitarian assistance - suggesting inappropriate interventions by inadequately trained aid workers. When confronted with shortcomings in the delivery of assistance, providers often respond that they are doing the best that they can; in reality, effectiveness, rather than reputation, can only be determined by sound empirical evidence for the interventions undertaken - doing the best that can be done demands nothing less.
Eric LaMont Gregory
The role of the Red Cross blanket as a first-phase emergency intervention is based on an understanding of the relationship between clothing, ambient temperature conditions, and energy expenditure. Substantial energy can be saved and therefore the survival time of a person without food can be extended by preventing excess heat loss. The evidence is that limited access to clothing, shelter, and fuel have a major and rapid impact on survival, especially for infants