Tag Archives: hurricane preparedness

Hurricane Preparedness for Seniors

hurricane preparedness for seniors

Hurricanes are incredibly destructive, with high winds that can tear structures apart and rainfall and storm surges that can cause significant flooding. People know when they live in a hurricane-prone area, and they will usually have some warning that a hurricane is coming, even though the course of a storm can sometimes curve unpredictably. This means that there is time to prepare – take advantage of that!

Seniors can have particular difficulty withstanding a hurricane. Evacuation can be especially difficult for seniors, many of whom can’t drive, or have mobility issues. Evacuation can be challenging emotionally for seniors as well.

Even though we have more sophisticated methods of predicting storms and their paths than ever before, it is often difficult for seniors to access information about a storm’s approach, and to prepare for it on their own.

Because of this, seniors in hurricane-prone areas should be aware of ways to prepare, and should make specific disaster-preparedness plans with their family members and caregivers.

Special Considerations

It is important to understand the difference between an advisory, a watch, and a warning. When dealing with weather events, forecasters use a three-tier system to let people know what risks they face.

  1. An Advisory simply means that hurricane-related weather might inconvenience people in an area or cause mild disruption.
  2. Watch means that there’s a high likelihood that a hurricane will strike in the area in the next two days, and works mostly as a suggestion to stay tuned to emergency bulletins.
  3. Warning means that there’s a very high likelihood that a hurricane will strike in the area in the next 36 hours, and means that you should probably prepare to evacuate.

Special Plans

To prepare for hurricane season, the best strategy is to do the most you can to prepare for the worst. This includes:

  1. Take an inventory of valuables in case the storm damages the home. This can be as simple as taking a video or pictures of your home’s interior using the camera on your phone.
  2. Make your home as weather-proof as possible, including cleaning out gutters and downspouts, and making sure sump pumps and other anti-flooding measures are in good condition. You may also want to make sure that valuable items and important documents are out of the range of any floodwaters. If seniors are unable to do these activities their your own, be sure that caregivers, family members, or friends help them prepare in this way.
  3. For your safety and comfort, have a disaster supplies kit packed and ready in one place before a disaster hits. Assemble enough supplies to last for at least three days. Store your supplies in one or more easy-to-carry containers, such as a backpack or duffel bag (seniors might want to consider storing supplies in a container that has wheels so that it is easy to carry)
  4. Keeping your kit up-to-date is also important. Review the contents at least every six months or as your needs change. Check expiration dates and shift your stored supplies into everyday use before they expire. Replace food, water and batteries, and refresh medications and other perishable items with “first in, first out” practices.
  5. Be ready to evacuate. Try to make your emergency preparedness kit is as portable as possible, and, if you have a car, always leave it with at least half a tank of gas during hurricane season to facilitate a quick getaway.
  6. Arrange for someone to check on you during the event of a disaster. Be sure to include any caregivers in your meeting and planning efforts.
  7. Carry family contact information in your wallet. Choose an out-of-town contact person. After a disaster, it is often easier to make a long-distance call than a local call from a disaster area.
  8. Keep copies of vital family records and other important documents such as birth and marriage certificates, social security cards, passports, wills, deeds, and financial, insurance and immunizations records in a safe location, like a fire safe or safe-deposit box
  9. Keep support items like wheelchairs and walkers in a designated place so they can be found quickly. This step is essential for those who have home-health caregivers, particularly for those who are bed bound.
  10. Label any equipment, such as wheelchairs, canes or walkers, that you would need with your name, address and phone numbers.

Heat In The Aftermath

A hurricane often brings hot, humid weather in its wake, and that can be dangerous if it’s coupled with a long-term power outage, because seniors often have particular difficulty coping with heat. Even if your home is intact and you haven’t been told to evacuate, a power outage could still happen, and might be a good reason to leave the area in order to avoid heat-related health problems.

Help Seniors Be Prepared

In summary, it can be hard for seniors to prepare for disasters on their own. It is essential, then, for seniors and the people who care for them to give a lot of thought to how best to respond to natural disasters. They should, ideally, plan and prepare for them far in advance. One thing that people can do to help is check in to make sure that seniors are aware of any potential threats and to encourage them to take appropriate action.

Meet with your family, friends, and caregivers frequently to explain your concerns and create a support network that can work as a team to prepare, and to respond in the event of a natural disaster.

For a complete guide on disaster-preparedness, we recommend utilizing this booklet from the Red Cross.

Partner with a Trusted In Home Care Provider

Trusted by Florida families for more than 25 years, American In Home Care’s credentialed caregivers can help support the hobbies, pastimes, and activities that our older adult clients enjoy. In addition to helping keep a senior loved one active and engaged, let us assist with light housekeeping, meal planning and preparation, and so much more.

To learn more about our comprehensive home care services, reach out to one of the four
offices conveniently located throughout the state:

Contact ustoday to learn more about how our professional Florida home care services can offer much needed companionship during the pandemic for a senior you love. We look forward to hearing from you!

State of Florida License and Registration Numbers: 30211518, 30211651, 30211295, 30211390, 30210978, 30211293, 30211382, 30211504, 30211733, 30211535, 30211531, 30211710, 30211709, 30211045, 5661

Hurricane Preparedness for Seniors: Tips to Help Older Adults

Ensure hurricane preparedness for seniors with these tips. home health care --

Hurricanes are a natural part of Florida living. Find helpful tips for hurricane preparedness for seniors from American In-Home Care.
With more hurricanes hitting Florida than any other U.S state, being prepared is more than just a good idea; it’s a necessity. And with the devastation from Hurricane Michael in 2018 still fresh in our minds, now is the perfect time to review our emergency plans, ensure we’re stocked up on supplies, and have copies of all of our important documents safely stored in case we need them. We invite you to read through this previous blog post for specific recommendations. Since older adults require special considerations when preparing for a natural disaster such as a hurricane, we’re compiled some helpful resources to ensure their particular needs are addressed:

The Administration for Community Living Emergency Preparedness: With as many as half of older adults diagnosed with two or more chronic medical conditions, in addition to the normal impacts of aging, vulnerability is magnified during a time of crisis. This page provides tips for a “whole-community” approach to preparedness to ensure the wellbeing of our area’s senior population.

State of Florida Elder Affairs Disaster Preparedness Guide for Elders: With messages from both the governor and secretary of Florida, this downloadable document contains a wealth of information, answers to frequently asked questions, help with determining insurance coverage, what to do when a hurricane warning is issued, and much more.

The American Red Cross Disaster Preparedness For Seniors By Seniors Guide: Written by a group of seniors who experienced the unique perspective of enduring a two-week power outage during a massive ice storm in New York, this guide is invaluable for gaining firsthand wisdom and suggestions to help older adults safely weather any storm.

Older Floridians Handbook: Published by the Florida Justice Institute, Inc., with input from Carlton Fields, P.A. and the Florida Department of Elder Affairs, this handbook highlights legal and program information on topics that are of special interest to older Floridians.

Safe Drug Use After a Natural Disaster: The U.S. Food & Drug Administration has compiled important information on the use of medications impacted by fire, flood, unsafe water, or power outages – crucial for older adults, the majority of whom are taking multiple medications.

In addition, we’re pleased to refer fully credentialed caregivers to seniors and their families to ensure they’re completely prepared and supported before, during, and after a hurricane. Whether the need is for assistance in putting together an emergency preparedness plan and kit, helping with personal care needs, preparing meals, running errands, or simply providing friendly companionship and reassurance during a time of uncertainty, our referred care providers are here for you.

As the trusted choice for senior in-home care in Florida for over 25 years, our family of brands has offices conveniently located throughout the state:

American In-Home Care – Serving North, Central, and West Coast of Florida

Advocate In-Home Care – Serving Southeast and Southwest Florida

Douglas In-Home Care – Serving Treasure Coast

Whitsyms In-Home Care – Serving Southeast and Southwest Florida

Contact us today at the location nearest you and let us help find the perfect care provider to meet your needs.

State of Florida License and Registration Numbers: 30211518, 30211651, 30211295, 30211390, 30210978, 30211293, 30211382, 30211504, 30211733, 30211535, 30211531, 30211710, 30211709, 30211045, 5661