Emergency and disaster preparedness
For people with a chronic health condition like eczema, disaster preparedness requires a few additional considerations.
Get disaster-ready now
- Develop an emergency plan.
- Print RX on the Run cards for yourself and those in your care.
Healthcare Ready’s wallet-size card helps you keep track of conditions, providers, and prescriptions when you don’t have access to electronic and paper records.
- Take inventory of your medications and re-order any that are running low.
- Assemble an emergency preparedness kit.
- Assemble an eczema emergency preparedness kit.
- Create a packing list. Write a list of all of the items (that aren’t part of your emergency kits) that you’ll need to gather in a hurry if you’re forced to evacuate. Keep the list in a place where you can find it, and, if the time comes, follow the list to a tee.
- Add Red Cross mobile apps to your devices.
What to do when a disaster occurs
Stay Healthy During a Natural Disaster (courtesy of Healthcare Ready)
- Take necessary medications as prescribed. To help maintain regularly scheduled use of medicines, organize your prescriptions for the week and schedule a reminder on your phone to take them as prescribed.
- Make sure your medications remain stable. It’s important to make sure your medicines do not come into contact with water or become exposed to extreme temperatures. Some medicines must remain within a certain temperature range.
- Use Rx Open to locate nearest open pharmacy if you run out of medicines or need a refill. When a disaster is declared, Rx Open provides up-to-date information on pharmacy operations and closures in these areas. If you have a chronic disease, disability, or are a senior and need emergency assistance, refer to the emergency resources below:
• Healthcare Ready: 1-866-247-2694
• FEMA: 1-800-621-3362
• American Diabetes Association: 1-800-342-2283
• American Heart Association: 1-800-242-8721
• American Association of People with Disabilities: 1-800-840-8844
- Drink plenty of bottled water and avoid skipping meals. Eat nutrient-rich, non-refrigerated foods such as fruits and vegetables.
- Beware of floodwater contaminants:
• Do not drink floodwater; drink bottled water instead. If you don’t have bottled water, boil
(for at least 1 minute) or disinfect water to make it safe.
• Do not cook, clean or brush teeth with floodwater.
• Cover open wounds and limit exposure to floodwater at all times.
- Do not eat foods that have expired, perished or come in contact with flood water. Perishable foods in the refrigerator will be unsafe to eat after 4 hours without power. Use dry or block ice to keep your refrigerator cold for longer or use an extra cooler.
- Recognize symptoms of food or waterborne illness. If you experience vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal pain, contact a healthcare provider immediately.
Replace lost medications as soon as possible
Here are the steps to take if you experience a personal emergency that results in the loss of your eczema medications.
- Contact your health care provider. Explain your situation and that you need to refill your prescription early.
- If you have insurance, contact your insurance company. Explain the situation to them and that you need to refill your prescription early.
- If your insurance company is not compliant, contact your state’s insurance commissioner for support.
- If you don’t have insurance, you may be able to find assistance paying for your replacement medications. Learn more about those resources here.
If a disaster occurs that causes local resources to be limited – for example, your doctor or pharmacist is closed – follow as many of the steps for the Personal Impact emergency as possible. If you’re unable to contact your provider, start by contacting your pharmacy; your pharmacist can help you get insurance authorization. If you’re unable to contact your local pharmacy, a nearby store that’s part of the same chain should be able to help you.
In the case of a large-scale disaster, providers, pharmacies, and other local resources may not be accessible. In such a case, contact your insurance company directly. To find a pharmacy that’s open to refill your prescription(s), consult Healthcare Ready’s Rx Open, which provides real-time information within disaster areas.
Know your resources
- Red Cross can help you find shelter and recover from a disaster.
- National Eczema Association can help you with complimentary Seal of Acceptance™ products.
- Pharmaceutical companies often offer coupon or other assistance programs to help pay for your medications. Research the companies that make your medications in advance and bookmark the URLs for their programs.