Disaster Prep for Older Adults

Prepare So You Can Protect

Disaster Preparedness - prepare so you can protectAs Floridians, we think about preparing for hurricanes, when in fact, we need to be prepared for other emergencies as well, including:

    • Tornadoes
    • Floods
    • Lightning and Thunderstorms
    • Power Outages
    • Home Fires
    • Gas Leaks
    • Hazardous Materials Spills

Please review this section for some additional safety tips and more information below from the Red Cross.

Older Adults Preparedness Checklist

Although disasters affect everyone, older adults can be at greater risk due to disabilities, isolation, and disruptions in health care. Climate change is causing more frequent and extreme weather events. But we can take action to prepare. Prepare now to protect yourself, your loved ones, and your home.

plan with your teamPlan With Your Team
  • Plan with a team of trusted people you can help and who can assist you during a disaster.
  • Have a team meeting so that you can plan together.
    • Plan how you will communicate with one another before, during and after a disaster.
    • Discuss how your medical, physical and cognitive needs may affect your ability to respond to a disaster.
    • Encourage everyone to share any needs but also ways they can help.
    • Assign responsibilities ahead of time.
Understand your risksUnderstand Your Risks
  • Learn about the disasters that are likely to happen in your community.
  • Understand how your local community will respond so you know what to expect.
make plans to stay safeMake Plans to Stay Safe
  • Make plans with your team to stay safe from the disasters that may impact your community.
  • Talk with your doctor about ways to plan for health needs during a disaster.
  • Depending on the disaster, you may need to shelter where you are or evacuate to stay safe. Think through these questions:
    • Can I stay safely at home without power? Will I need electricity to operate medical equipment or keep medicines cold?
    • If I need to evacuate – Where will I go? How will I get there? Where will I stay? What will I bring with me?How will I care for my pets? Are pets allowed where I am evacuating? Will I have the food and medication they need?
plan to stay connectedPlan to Stay Connected
  • Listen to the guidance from your local authorities.
  • Sign up for local emergency alerts like with Alert Manatee.
  • Have plans for backup power so that you can meet your basic needs during an outage.
  • Have a battery-powered radio.
  • Plan to monitor weather conditions.
emergency supplies and equipmentGather Emergency Supplies
  • Gather food, water, and medicine. Organize supplies into a Go-Kit and a Stay-at-Home Kit.
  • Talk with your doctor about ways to plan for health needs during a disaster.
  • Depending on the disaster, you may need to shelter where you are or evacuate to stay safe. Think through these questions:
    • Go-Kit: at least three days of essential supplies if you need to leave immediately. Include backup batteries and chargers for your devices (cell phone, CPAP, wheelchair, etc.)
    • Stay-at-Home Kit: at least two weeks of supplies. Stores and pharmacies may be closed.
  • Access to medications may be interrupted during a disaster. Talk with your doctor about how to ensure access to your essential medications.
  • Include supplies for your pets and service dogs such as food, medications, disposal bags, a crate, and a leash.
prepare and protect key documentsPrepare and Protect Key Documents
  • Keep personal, financial, and medical records safe and easy to access (hard copies or securely backed up).
  • Keep an up-to-date list of medical information: conditions, allergies, medications, prescription records, doctors, and insurance cards. Include a similar list for your pets and service dogs.
take care of yourselfTake Care of Yourself
  • It’s normal to have bad feelings, stress, or anxiety after a disaster or other emergency. Eat healthy food and get enough sleep to help you deal with stress.
  • After a disaster, scam artists, identity thieves, and other criminals may take advantage of some people. Work with vetted, trusted sources, and safeguard your personal and financial information.
  • Know that you can contact the Disaster Distress Helpline for free if you need to talk to someone. Call or text 1-800-985-5990.

Click this link to download the American National Red Cross’ Disaster Planning Checklist PDF »»

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