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If You Have a Disability

 

Like everyone else, you need to be ready to stay at home or to leave quickly, to keep aware of what is going on, and to have prepared so you can stay at home for several days or leave quickly.

In addition to what everyone else should plan for, you should assess what special items you may need to have available and what special assistance you may need to be able to either stay at home or leave it for several days.

  • You may need to include family, friends, personal attendants, service providers and others as a part of your plan.
    • Have more than one person who is convenient to your home, two or three more at where you work and so on. When you identify these people early in your planning, they can develop their family plans at the same time, easing the stress and eliminating much of the confusion when something does happen.
  • If you use special equipment (walker, augmentative communication device, hearing aid, even glasses), label it with your name and contact information if possible. At least put a mark on small items so they will be easy to identify.
  • Put extra batteries, chargers, medications and a list of them by name, dosage, frequency and the doctor with your emergency telephone list.
  • If medications need to be refrigerated, keep a cooler and ice packs available.
  • If you have a service animal, have identification tags, proof of vaccinations and veterinarian contact, along with extra food if you need to leave or must stay in your home.
  • If you receive regular services such as home health care, or transportation, learn how to contact them in an emergency. Ask them to identify a back-up service provider.
  • Wear a medical alert tag or bracelet, or write down your disability-related or health condition on a piece of paper and keep it with you.
  • If you use electrically dependent equipment, consider storing a manual substitute in your home or office in case you run out of a power source.
  • If necessary, look into evacuation assistive devices or the installation of ramps.

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