Diabetes Makes Disaster Planning Even More Important
North American Precis Syndicate
A little forethought can help keep a disaster from becoming double trouble for you, even if you have diabetes. (NAPS)
(NAPSI)—Everyone should plan for natural disasters, but this
planning is especially important if you have a chronic health condition such
as diabetes. Follow these nine steps to be ready:
1. Do basic planning. Plan for
where you will go if you must leave home, how you will get there and who will
meet you there. Stay current with your vaccinations. Contact your county
emergency management office for advice on transportation and other services
for people with special needs.
2. Pack a go-kit. In a
waterproof container, pack first aid supplies including antibiotic cream, a
flashlight and spare clothes. Include extra socks and shoes, because it’s
important to keep your feet dry and free of infection. Keep on hand for quick
packing a week’s worth of medicine plus supplies, medical equipment,
spare equipment batteries and cash. If you use insulin, store it in the
fridge with an insulated lunch bag nearby, ready to fill and go. Keep your
kit by the front door.
3. Put an information folder in
your kit. This should include contact information for your healthcare
professionals, pharmacy and emergency contact person; a list of your
medicines, doses and dosing schedules; and the make, model and serial number
of any medical device you use in case you need to replace it. Also include
copies of recent A1C results or other lab work, your health insurance card
and your photo ID.
4. Include food supplies in your
kit. Pack a three-day supply of water and nonperishable foods that fit
with your meal plan. Include snacks to treat low blood sugar.
5. Wear a medical alert ID. Ask
your healthcare professional about how to get a free tag that states your
medical condition. This is important if you need medical care but are not in
a condition to talk.
6. Do kidney care planning. If
you are on dialysis for kidney disease, which often co-occurs with diabetes,
talk to your dialysis center about their disaster plans. If you have a home
dialysis or peritoneal dialysis machine, plan for how to power it if the
electricity is out and how to stop dialysis if you lose power in the middle
of a treatment. Register with your water and power companies for priority
service restoration. In your information folder, keep a copy of your dialysis
treatment plan, the phone numbers of your dialysis center and other nearby
centers, and the kidney community hotline at (866) 901-3773. Talk with your
doctor about what food to pack in your go-kit for an emergency three-day
diet. This eating plan can save your life if dialysis treatments are missed
or delayed, because it reduces water and waste buildup in your body. Finally,
if a disaster is looming, try to get your dialysis treatment ahead of
7. Be ready. Tune in to weather
reports and listen for what local leaders say about evacuation. Keep your
phone and any medical devices charged. If you have a car, keep it gassed up.
8. Evacuate early. As soon as
local leaders advise people to evacuate, go to your preplanned location. Don’t
risk being trapped without access to electricity, clean water and supplies.
Plus, early evacuation gives you a better chance of being housed in a
special-needs shelter. When you arrive at a shelter, alert workers about your
health conditions so you may get the support you need.
9. Update your plan and restock
your kit. At least once a year, review your emergency plan with your
doctor. On an ongoing basis, swap out items with expiration dates.
To learn more about how to manage your diabetes, visit https://www.niddk.nih.gov.
“Everyone should plan for natural
disasters, but it’s especially important if you have a chronic health
condition such as diabetes, advise the experts at the National Institute of
Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. http://bit.ly/2H9iDxZ”
On the Net:North American Precis Syndicate, Inc.(NAPSI)