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The Florida Department of Health works to protect, promote & improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county, & community efforts.

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How to Prepare a Disaster Supply Kit

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The  height of hurricane season in Florida is here, and now is the perfect time to ensure your emergency supply kit includes the items necessary to meet all of your family’s medical needs. During an emergency, the medicines and devices you depend on daily will be crucial to your health and safety. With a few simple steps, you can be sure your most important medical needs are met during an emergency.

Talk with your health care provider and pharmacist about receiving emergency medication supplies. Under a federally declared emergency, you can get an extra 30-day supply with no price increase, even for recently filled prescriptions.

Include the following items, as appropriate, in your emergency supply kit:

  • List of all medications, including aspirin or non-aspirin pain reliever.
  • Equipment and supplies necessary for your medications, i.e. alcohol wipes, syringes, test equipment, ice or other coolants for medications that require lower temperatures.
  • Medicines such as anti-diarrhea medication, antacid for upset stomach, laxatives, children’s medications, etc.
  • List of make, style and serial numbers of medical devices such as pacemakers, pumps, monitors and accommodation devices. Be sure to pack extra batteries.
  • First aid kit that includes bandages and gauzes, safety pins, cleaning agent, latex gloves, sunscreen, scissors, sewing needle(s), adhesive tape, tweezers, moistened towelettes, antiseptic, rubbing alcohol, thermometer, tongue depressors, petroleum jelly or other lubricant, medicine dropper, etc.

Hearing and vision aids are also important to have in your emergency supply kit, including:

  • Spare prescription glasses and contact lenses, even if they are not your latest prescription. Don’t forget cleaning solution.
  • Sunglasses — both prescription and non-prescription.
  • Spare hearing aids, even if they are not your latest prescription, and extra batteries.

You should also include important medical-related documents such as:

  • Doctor’s and pharmacy’s contact information.
  • Health insurance information, i.e. policy and claim numbers.
  • Blood type and any allergies.
  • Medical history and current conditions.
  • Copies of prescriptions for medications and required doses.
  • Documents identifying any disability or access and functional needs.

Make these documents portable for evacuation by scanning and saving them on a thumb drive or create a notebook, and then store in a waterproof bag or container. 

Now that you have your prescription for preparedness, create your family’s emergency supply kit and emergency  plan today.  If you already have a kit and plan, it’s Time for a Check-up!

For more suggestions on medical-related items to include in your emergency supply kit, and for tips on how you and your family can prepare for a disaster or emergency, get your copy of the Florida Department of Health Emergency Preparedness Guide at  http://www.doh.state.fl.us/hurricane/hurricaneinfoindex.html.