Emergencies can strike at any time and often with little to no forewarning. Because of this, preparation and planning are key! There are things you can do for you and your family that will allow you to be better prepared when disaster strikes. When families, communities and individuals are prepared, the fear, anxiety and loss that can accompany a disaster are greatly reduced.
What can I do to prepare for an emergency?
There are two key things to do in preparation for emergencies: create an emergency kit, and make a plan for evacuation or sheltering in place with your family’s needs in mind. Creating an emergency kit catered to your loved ones’ medical or personal needs allows you to be equipped with the right supplies no matter the emergency.
All emergency kits should have:
- First aid kit
- Kitchen and utility tools
- Bottled water (one gallon per person per day for several days, for drinking and sanitation)
- Food with a long shelf life, as well as foods that cater to any specific dietary needs
- Extra pair of clothes for each family member
- Medications (if not in an emergency kit, keep them in a designated place where they can quickly be gathered)
These kits may vary depending on one’s medical and personal needs. Families should create an emergency kit that includes all necessary tools to provide care for your loved ones even in the case of evacuation or sheltering in place. This may include things like mobility aids, medical tools/technology, or additional sanitary supplies.
Some kits may need things like:
- Diapers, chucks, and other sanitary supplies
- Batteries for hearing aids, oxygen, breathing devices, etc.
- Alternative power sources for communication aids, light phone signalers, etc.
- Cane replacement or repair kit
- G-tube feeding supplies and additional formula
Eyeglasses or contact lenses if needed
- Infant formula, bottles, diapers, wipes and diaper rash cream
- Pet food and supplies
File of Life
A file of life is a small tool that can save lives. These magnets allow first responders to contact PASCO to relay your medical information in case of emergency. File of Life magnets are distributed to PASCO families upon start of care and should be placed on your refrigerator where they can easily be seen. If you did not receive or misplaced your file of life magnet, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org and we would be happy to provide one for you.
In the next installment of our Emergency Preparedness series, we will walk through creating an emergency plan for you and your loved ones.