Hurricane Sandy is rearing her ugly head, with plans to brutally hit nearly the entire East Coast of the U.S. But what if you or your aging loved ones are in the path of this one-eyed monster? Respite could be an option to help ensure the safety of your elderly loved ones during this and other natural disasters.
Frankenstorm threatens seniors along the East Coast
Meteorologists are calling Sandy “Frankenstorm,” with widespread effects expected to cause disastrous conditions throughout the coast and as far inland as Ohio. This, and similar situations, are especially nerve-wracking for long-distance caregivers who live hundreds or thousands of miles away from their aging loved ones. How can you ensure your loved ones will be safe, get the services they need and even be prepared to evacuate if necessary?
If your loved one already resides in a nursing home, find out what the facility’s disaster plan is. Most have evacuation plans as well as procedures for power outages.
Seniors are especially vulnerable during disasters
Seniors living home alone are especially vulnerable during these situations. Make sure your loved one has an emergency kit packed should an evacuation become necessary. This should include enough medications for at least one week and other essentials. Seniors using insulin, for instance, will need a cooler.
The potential problems for seniors living alone are endless. Windows and doors must be secured safely, extended power outages can threaten food safety and limit the supply of oxygen for those on continuous O2. Seniors with limited mobility may not be able to move to a safe area of the home quickly enough or be able to evacuate an area without assistance. When the closest relative lives hundreds of miles away and evacuations occurring in neighboring towns, even getting to your aging loved ones to offer help can be impossible.
Respite care can provide safety and comfort
Respite care is one option that can offer peace of mind. Nursing homes and assisted living facilities in hurricane-prone areas typically have a disaster plan in place and are well-equipped to serve the needs of their residents under less than ideal circumstances. Many of these facilities offer short-term respite stays during storms such as Sandy, because they’re better able to keep the elderly safe and sound than many seniors are able to do on their own.
With Hurricane Sandy threatening Florida this weekend, you may be concerned about the safety of your aging loved one. Fortunately, our directory includes more than 150 facilities offering respite care in Florida to ease the process of finding a senior care home to keep your loved one safe and sound over the next few days.
As the storm tracks its way up the East Coast, those with loved ones in other affected areas can search for respite care services in any part of the United States from our Respite Care Center.