No matter what part of the county you live in, chances are a natural disaster can strike. Whether its hurricanes, tornados, floods, wildfires or something else, you and your family need to be prepared. However, if you have an elderly relative that is living at home alone but depends on you, other family member and elder care providers for daily assistance, they also need an emergency response and preparedness plan specific to their needs.
What Does an Emergency Preparedness Plan Require?
During an emergency, it’s never going to be easy to go slow and cautiously, because every minute counts in avoiding danger, evacuating or sheltering in place. You’ll need to write out the emergency plan for each type of natural disaster and keep it somewhere that is accessible. You and your aging relative can review it often, and it should also be shared with any other regular assistant, such as an elder care provider.
Here are just a few areas to consider when creating an emergency response and preparedness plan:
• Create a plan for each type of natural disaster that your elderly loved one might face: hurricane, earthquake, wildfire, tornado, house fire, flooding, blizzard, or
• Develop easy and safe escape routes from the home in the event of a house fire. Tailor the escape routes to the elderly adult’s abilities.
• Designate a meeting place once the home has been evacuated, usually a neighbor’s driveway or nearby landmark.
• Prepare a grab-and-go emergency bag tailored to your elderly relative’s needs. Most contain an extra set of clothing, spare eyeglasses, a little cash, a week’s supply of medication, a detailed medical history paper and any other essential items that the aging adult may need in an emergency.
• Make plans for pets to evacuate as well, because that is an often-overlooked aspect of natural disasters. Pets can also benefit from a grab-and-go bag that contains food and accessories.
Spreading the Word
You and your aging loved one should come up with emergency response and preparedness plans and review them regularly. You’ll also need to go over them with anyone else that spends time with your elderly relative in their home, such as other family members, elder care providers, friends and even neighbors. Elder care providers in particular should know about the emergency plans you have in place as the will be will your elderly loved one the most if you aren’t around.
There’s no way for you, your aging loved one, elder care provider or anyone else to know when a natural disaster or catastrophic emergency will happen. You can give seniors the best chance of getting through it with a detailed emergency response and preparedness plan for numerous situations, and it’s never too late to start.
If you or someone you know needs help with Elder Care in Kentwood, MI, contact Gauthier Family Home Care. We provide quality and affordable home care services in our community. Call us at (616) 258-2300 for more information.
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