UNITED STATES─Toni: We are new to the Houston area and Hurricane Harvey absolutely stressed my wife, Joy, to almost having a nervous breakdown.  In February, she turned 65 and now is obsessed that if we get caught in a flood, she will pick up the Coronavirus (COVID-19). With an evacuation in tiny boats when areas are under water, she is extremely stressed.

Joy’s 91-year-old mother is living in an assisted living facility and we live over 15 miles away from her. What can we do to be prepared for another an emergency regarding the elderly? Seeing what is happening in other areas regarding nursing homes with elderly and COVID-19 this is concerning us? Thanks, Chris from The Woodlands Chris:

Everyone should have a family disaster readiness plan for hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, and/or all types of natural disasters. Now with COVID-19, this is especially important for seniors or those that are disabled. This is especially crucial for their survival because many are energy or technologically dependent for life support or ongoing medical treatment.

***Remember to have extra masks and practice “social distancing” of at least 6ft.***

Here are a few questions, to help you prepare for nearly any disaster or hurricane no matter what area of America you live with or without coronavirus COVID-19.

  • Do I stay or go? Know your evacuation route or have a plan in place. Advise your family of your escape route. This will depend on where you live either in the city or in the country. Leave early because during many storms or disasters there have been massive traffic jams to get out of that area.
  1. a)  Make sure you have a sufficient supply of prescriptions and always bring your list of current prescriptions for yourself or any family member.
  2. b)   Have a copy of medical records for those with critical medical conditions such as your mother-in-law’s. Keep the medical records in a safe place that you can get to immediately when evacuating.
  3. c) Advise your family members where the information is located for those with health issues.
  • How will you reconnect with family if separated? Create a plan to reconnect with loved ones if land or cell phones are down. Have a backup battery to charge cell phones.
  • Do I have access to clean water? If you do not have access to clean water, then any crisis becomes critical in a couple of days.  Remember, you may not have access to a grocery store due to the type of disaster you are in or supplies may be depleted. Begin gathering water and food supplies due to the low amount that America now has due to COVID-19.
  • Do I have adequate food supply? Most households have a few days of food available, but the best way to stock up on additional food and supplies is to add a little bit each week. Remember, during a crisis the power may be out, so cook your frozen & refrigerated food first. Be sure to have plenty of charcoal or gas tanks for a grill to last a week or 2.
  • Do I have enough cash on hand in case the ATMs are not working? Remember to take your check book. Make sure you have your driver’s license, passport, or ID to cash a check.

Hurricane season officially starts on Monday, June 1 and will not end until Monday, November 30. America does not take storms or any natural disasters for granted.  Hurricane Harvey devastated Houston, tornadoes and forest fires have wiped out areas.

Now is time for America to join together and “Stay Safe”!

Toni King, author of the Medicare Survival Guide® is giving a $5 discount to the Toni Says® readers on the Medicare Survival Guide® Advanced book at www.tonisays.com.