Now that hurricane season is in full-swing, you need to make sure that your parents are taken care of. Hurricanes can be particularly hazardous for the aging, especially if they're living on their own. They can't always make the proper preparations. That's why it's so important you step in to help. Here are four steps you can take to protect your parents during the next hurricane:
Get Your Home Prepared
In the days leading up to the storm, you'll need to get your home prepared for your family. This is particularly important if your parents use medical equipment such as oxygen. If your parents have special needs such as elevated toilet seats, or hospital beds, arrange to have those items delivered to your home prior to the storms arrival.
Plan for Power Outages
If you and your parents will be in the path of the hurricane, you need to prepare for power outages. Even if you're not in direct line with the eye of the storm, power outages can occur a several mile radius, which means you may be without power. To protect your parents, and provide for their needs, be sure you have an emergency generator on hand. The emergency generator will ensure that you have the power to operate medical equipment. However, it will also provide power that will be useful to keep your parents comfortable while they're inside the house. Temperatures can fluctuate quite a lot during hurricanes. A generator will ensure that they don't suffer from heat-related illnesses or exposure during the cold.
Keep an Additional Supply of Medication
During storm conditions, there's no way of knowing how long you'll be separated from medical care. To make sure your parents don't run out of their prescription medication, request an emergency supply of the medications that are most vital to them. If your parents are out of refills, be sure to contact their primary-care physician to obtain the refills they'll need during the storm. Not only will the emergency supply of medication protect your parents during the storm, it will also give you peace of mind in knowing that they'll be taken care of.
Create a Plan with Their In-Home Support
If your parents have in-home support care, be sure to sit down with their care team to create a safety plan for them. This plan should include evacuation plans, last-minute details regarding care, and what your parent's caregivers should do in an emergency situation, such as if the storm comes in quicker than expected. If possible, arrange to have your parent's in-home care team transfer services to your home during the storm, so that you know your parent's needs are being met, and that they're safe from the coming storm. Your plans should also include how to evacuate safely should the need arise.
If you live in a state that experiences hurricanes, use the tips provided here to make sure your parents are safe during the storm.
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