Are you a caregiver for a senior, and anticipating a possible snowstorm? The next few months are sure to bring winter weather and possibly an early winter snowstorm in Denver. Under normal conditions most of us are able to weather the storms and continue to stay relatively safe. Those recovering from surgery, or coping with long term illness, can be severely impacted by being isolated when weather events strike unexpectedly.
It’s important to prepare older adults, and others in medical need, to be safe and prepared in case of an emergency, or threatened isolated period. When severe weather comes, there is always a threat of power outage, freezing temperatures, or being cut off from emergency measures.
Before The Snowstorm
Set up weather alerts in the area so you become aware beforehand of emergency situations. These alerts will keep you well informed, and you can choose best deliver method, be it text or email. Conference with your doctor if an emergency medical plan should be implemented.
Put neighbors on alert that might be able to temporarily fill-in and assist your senior in case of a snowstorm. Colorado Division of homeland Security & Emergency Management has a webpage that is informational and very helpful. They declare that, “winter storms are referred to as “deceptive killers?”
- Refill all prescriptions and have on hand all necessary medical extras.
- Because there is always the possibility of power outages, charge all cellphones and electrical devices. Change batteries in all flashlights and emergency lights.
- You should consider a generator if the patient requires oxygen, bi-pap, c-pap or other equipment that requires electricity. Check that smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors are working properly and have new batteries.
- Keep a supply of warm blankets and clothing, and check that all possible spare heating sources are in top maintained condition.
- Stock up foods, perishables and bottled water.
- Make sure vehicles are filled with gas and have tires checked.
- Have an evacuation route planned and identify nearby medical centers.
- Plan with someone local, or a company, to shovel snow from driveways, stairs.
- Have a professional inspect outside plumbing, and plan to insulate any exposed pipes.
- Know the locations of emergency warming stations in your city.
- Keep areas around space heaters clear and make sure they are equipped with automatic shut-off.
For more winter weather tips and planning, visit the National Weather Service website. And always remember that GoldLeaf Home Health is here to help you build an emergency weather plan for your loved one that will make after the storm situation so much safer and more secure.