Emergency Planning for Seniors


  • If you anticipate needing assistance during a disaster, talk to family, friends and others who will be part of your personal support network.
  • Write down and share each aspect of your emergency plan with everyone in your support network.
  • Make sure everyone knows how you plan to evacuate your home or workplace and where you will go in case of a disaster.
  • Make sure that someone in your local network has an extra key to your home and knows where you keep your emergency supplies.
  • Teach those who will help you how to use any lifesaving equipment, administer medicine in case of an emergency.
  • Practice your plan with those who have agreed to be part of your network.


  • Switch to electronic payments to protect yourself financially before disaster strikes. It also eliminates the risk of stolen checks.
  • Direct deposit to a checking or savings account is the best option for people with bank accounts. Federal benefit recipients can sign up by calling (800) 333-1795 or at GoDirect.org.
  • If you do not have a bank account, sign up for Direct Express® prepaid debit card.
  • Call toll-free at (877) 212-9991 or sign up online at USDirectExpress.com.


  • Be sure you have what you need to make it on your own for at least one week (maybe longer).
  • Keep written copies of your prescriptions, over-the-counter medications and orders for medical equipment. If you can, keep this information on a computer flash drive, and make this available to family, friends or caretakers who can help you.
  • If you are able to obtain an emergency supply of prescription medication or consumable medical supplies, be sure to establish a plan for rotating your supply before the medications expire.
  • Talk with your doctor or pharmacist about how best to prepare.
  • Talk with your healthcare service providers, such a s home health care or treatment centers and find out in advance what their plans are in the event of an emergency like a hurricane.


Keep copies of the following documents in a waterproof container:

  • Medical insurance & Medicare cards
  • Health records from hospitals, doctors, pharmacies.
  • Style and serial numbers of any medical devices
  • The names and contact information of your support network.
  • If you have a communication disability, make sure your emergency information notes the best way to communicate with you.