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Caregiving Chronicles

News and analysis on caregiving topics in MetroWest and beyond.

Caregiving Chronicles

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Caregiving Chronicles will present news and analysis on caregiving topics in MetroWest and around the world, in-depth Q&As with experts in fields related to caregiving and updates and announcements about caregiving resources available in MetroWest from CaregivingMetroWest.org Program Director Douglas Flynn.


Emergency Planning for Older Adults
By DebraMcDonagh / September 5, 2019

With the Hurricane news, tornado watches and other unpredictable, severe weather patterns, it makes one think about how prepared you are for extreme weather emergencies?  


Each September, FEMA promotes National Preparedness Month, to encourage family and community disaster and emergency planning now and throughout the year.  #BeReady #PreparedNotScared 

The National Poll on Healthy Aging, administered by the University of Michigan, recently conducted a poll on Emergency Planning among Older Adults and found that many older adults, in particular, have not taken key steps to stay safe and healthy in power outages, severe weather or evacuation. Some key results revealed:

There are many things we can do to stay informed and be proactive in our preparedness. 

Here are a few ideas that we have gathered through our research:

  • Sign up for emergency warning systems in your community (FEMA offers a mobile app, click here for more info)
  • Put together an emergency kit with essential supplies and medicines
  • Have a week's worth of water, nutrition drinks, and bars on hand. 
  • Have cell phone chargers and radios that do not require electrical power.
  • Have a backup power supply if you rely on electrical power to run health-related equipment 
  • Develop a plan to communicate with loved ones during a disaster
  • Have a basic emergency plan to evacuate and stay safe during a flood, hurricane or fire 
  • Financial readiness – set aside money in an emergency fund if at all possible


The American Red Cross offers a very comprehensive booklet on Disaster Preparedness for Seniors   

The booklet includes information and checklists on what supplies to put into a disaster kit, what specific supplies you need if you live in a cold weather climate, what things you should stock in your car in the event of an emergency, advice on making plans for connecting with family or friends, what escape routes you should use and where to go for safety. It offers information specifically for disabled individuals, how to keep your pet or service animal safe and much more incredibly useful information. 

To download the booklet, click here.


Other Useful links from AARP:
AARP offers a do-it-yourself guide called Operation Emergency Prepare 
For those who are caregivers for older adults, AARP also offers Caregiving Basics for Preparing for an Emergency 




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