Assistance for the Ill or Disabled

Register now with your county Office of Emergency Management if you or a loved one require special medical accommodations. Bring at least three days of needed medical supplies, including: special food, water, prescriptions, nebulizers, syringes, sterile swabs and oxygen equipment. Important: Special needs shelters do not provide hands-on medical care so a caregiver may be necessary. Prepare to have back-up medical items on hand such as a battery
for ventilator and oxygen cylinders (48-hour supply).

If respirators or other electric-dependent medical equipment
is required, prior medical arrangements with a physician should be made. Registering with the power company is also advisable. If oxygen or other medical supplies are required, please check with your vendor about emergency plans.

A physician must be notified if you or someone you know needs hospitalization. Keep in mind there are a limited number of resources available during disasters such as hurricanes.

For home health care and homebound patients, inform health care provider where you will be during a hurricane and ask about their emergency plans. Remember to take medications, written instructions regarding care, special equipment and bedding if evacuation is necessary.

Those who live alone, or are without the support of family or friends, must take special precautions in the event of an emergency situation. People who are frail or disabled (either mentally or physically) may need special assistance from family members, friends or social service agencies. Older adults who are also caregivers may require outside assistance. Excessive stress and anxiety can contribute to increased episodes of illnessparticularly for persons with heart disease and other illnesses. If an older adult lives in a nursing home, assisted living facility or boarding home, the administrator should be contacted to learn about the disaster plan.

If you do not have transportation or are unable to drive, assistance may be available. Each local county offers some type of help to make sure you can get out of the storm’s path. Check with your county’s Office of Emergency Management (phone numbers are on the map pages of this guide) to find detailed information about routes to assist you in the event of an evacuation.