Epidemics effect and jeopardize all facets of social and family life. Rapid, rational response during a widespread illness or disaster may not only save your life, but also the lives of those you love at home.
Following simple guidelines for healthy behavior, developing and communicating an emergency plan ahead of time will ensure your family members are fully aware of how plans. Review the plans regularly and go through practice runs so everyone understands how the plans are to be executed in order to handle the situation more effectively.
It All Starts with Healthy Habits
Preventing illness in your home isn’t difficult. Simple actions can go a long way such as:
- Maintain a balanced diet.
- Exercise regularly.
- Get plenty of rest.
- Wash your hand thoroughly and often—for at least 10-20 seconds.
- Cough or sneeze into your elbow, not your hands.
- Routinely clean and disinfect surfaces—especially work, kitchen and bathroom areas.
- Keep up on immunizations.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Avoid close contact with those who are ill.
Making Family Emergency Plans
Many families put together pandemic and epidemic information to prevent their loved ones succumbing as well. The following are simple tips that you can follow should an epidemic occur.
- Communicate your epidemic plan and be sure everyone in your family is fully aware of it and how it is to be executed—contact, evacuation assembly location.
- Have a shelter or “quarantine” area established ahead of time, should the government ask that people remain immobile.
- Stock up on essentials—nonperishable items (seven days of food is recommended) and medical, practical, household and personal items.
- Prepare an outbreak plan should a loved one become ill. Discuss how you would care for sick family members and what each individuals’ responsibilities would be, should the need arise.
- Make a list of emergency contacts and information, including personal contacts, family physician, nearest hospital and pharmacy, school, employer, and spiritual contact information, and state public health department and emergency contact information, such as police, fire, paramedics and your security system provider.
- Know essential health information such as blood type, allergies, past and current medical conditions, as well as current medications and dosage information.
- Have a battery operated radio available so stay aware of government enforced quarantines and travel restrictions, as well as school/work closings.
Did You Know?
According to the Centers for Disease Control, frequent hand washing is one of the best ways to prevent the spread of diseases and keep you and your family healthy. Getting immunizations is fast, easy, fairly inexpensive and is proven to save lives. Be certain that you and your family get immunizations as suggested by your physician.