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Ready Or Not #46: Medications and a Plan During a Disaster

Updated: Dec 31, 2022

Here today, gone tomorrow. I’m talking about your health. Well for some of us anyway. It is our responsibility to make our today’s last as long as possible. It amazes me of all the different diseases and disorders our body can put up with. We are so fragile and yet so resilient, but ultimately it is our responsibility to keep up with our changing body. I’m not talking so much about the common cold or getting the flu, I’m talking about genetic disorders or debilitating diseases, some of which can be prevented.

We all need to start taking better care of ourselves. I am not saying that we need to start spending 3 hours a night at the gym, but we can go for more walks, plan ahead and eat healthier foods, don’t smoke, or drink, and get preventative health care. I know that it can be expensive if you don’t have health insurance because it has only been recently that I got health insurance through my job. Before that, our family didn’t have insurance for 14 years and so I understand that it can be difficult, but it is less expensive to have an annual physical than to try to clean up a medical disease/disorder gotten out of hand.

Now that I have gotten that off my chest I want to talk about the realities of a disaster and medicine availability. What kind of medications do you need? Are you diabetic? How are you going to keep your insulin cold (okay, pretend that it is summer and not below freezing outside). By changing a few bad habits, could you control your diabetes or do you have that really nasty diabetes 1 or out of control diabetes 2? Will you be able to get sugar free food or control your carbohydrate intake? Stressful times can contribute to bad side affects and I don’t want bad things to happen to you. Talk to your doctor about how much supply you can have on hand. Also, how will you store it? Consider these things and get prepared.

How about those with heart disorders or other problems that need to be monitored closely? Do you need oxygen? Do you need electricity? Do you have a debilitating disease that requires you to take pain medications and other controlled substances on a regular basis? Have you talked to your doctor about being able to have a little extra on hand, just in case? How about talking to your pharmacist? Do they have a protocol setup as to how they will conduct business during a disaster and how they intend to dispense certain types of medications? And what about their supply? How long will their supplies last without deliveries? Do hospitals or emergency personnel have first priority in an emergency? I don’t know, but it would be a good thing to find out.

Fortunately, I have very good health, but many of my loved ones do not, and this makes me concerned. In fact, I was so concerned that I bought a small used trailer just because I needed to make sure that I could take care of my loved ones during a disaster, healthy or not. I think of it as an extension of my 72-hour kit. It has a refrigerator for medications (and food), heat to keep them comfortable and a place to lie down and rest comfortably. It also has a generator for electricity. Not only is this good for them physically, but also emotionally. Remember? Stress is bad.

I know that not everyone can afford a trailer, even a used one (I bought mine by selling my plasma for two years), but it might be a good idea to plan with someone that does have a situation that could be helpful to you in a tight spot. These are hard things to think about, but better to think about it, prepare for it and be at peace knowing that if something happened that everyone would be taken care of. Isn’t that all we want, for our loved ones to be safe, whether they are healthy or not?


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