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Be Prepared for Unexpected Emergencies

Many people around the world are fascinated with television drama series depicting severe medical emergencies, tragedies, suffering, and rescues. But experiencing sudden health complications or fighting off natural disasters approaching your own home is not a fictional problem. Unforeseeable crises can happen at any time. Sudden or severe physical symptoms can be endangering to your life, particularly for a senior who lives alone and cannot call for immediate help. Living in an at-risk area susceptible to tornadoes, hurricanes, wildfires, blizzards, or other weather-related events requires readiness even before an emergency happens. How can you be prepared?

Here we will discuss a few things you can do to be more prepared for unexpected emergencies.

 

Set Up a plan.

Choose a group of people who can offer hands-on assistance in emergencies, family members, friends, professional caregivers, relatives, neighbors, or business associates.

Work with them to arrange an emergency plan. The plan should include emergency medical treatment options, relevant emergency documents/health information, home escape routes, transportation needs, community response and evacuation plans, and family/friend communication contacts.

List safe places to shelter in the home and note where to secure safe lodging within the community and outside the area.

Select the main contact person who will check on you during an emergency. Consider means of communication (knock on the door, etc.) if telephone service is down.

Determine an action plan for those with health limitations who may need physical assistance during an emergency.

 

Prepare emergency supplies.

Be aware that in an emergency, you may not have time to collect essential supplies. Basic services such as water, gas, electricity, and communications may be disrupted. Grocery stores, gas stations, and pharmacies may be closed or overwhelmed with lengthy lines.

Organize your emergency supply kit now before any medical alert or disaster situation arises. Here is a list of some things to include:

  • First aid kit.
  • Flashlight, radio, and spare batteries.
  • Sufficient supplies of water, nonperishable food, medications, toiletries, etc. for at least three days.
  • Blankets, a change of clothing, and sturdy shoes or warm boots.
  • Credit cards and cash.
  • Copies of important documents such as financial records, birth certificates, Social Security cards, and passports in a fire-proof container.
  • Cellphone with a portable charger.

Keep the emergency supply kit in a safe accessible place and be sure to include contact information for family and friends.

Stock a vehicle supply kit that includes jumper cables and a tire repair kit. In summer, your vehicle supply kit should include sunscreen, a shade-providing hat, and extra water. A wintertime kit should include an ice scraper/snow brush, and warm clothes, gloves, and boots. Review and update supplies every six months or as the seasons change.

 

Identify community resources.

It is important to know how your community will alert you of an approaching disaster and stay in contact with you during and after an emergency. Find out which local television and radio stations will broadcast emergency messages via the Emergency Alert System. Know in advance which community first responders will go door to door with emergency warnings and evacuation orders.

As communities expand and offer more medical facilities, you may not realize which hospital or emergency room is nearest to you. To find a nearby hospital, you can visit ushospitalfinder.com.

Preplanning will reduce stress when a medical emergency or disaster alert arises. No one wants to be caught off guard in times of crisis. Every action you take now can determine the outcome of emergencies in the future.

 

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