It’s officially hurricane season, and as South Florida residents, we know the importance of being prepared (batteries, bottles of water, and so much more!). But for cancer patients and caregivers, special safety measures should be taken to stay safe in the event of a tropical storm or hurricane.
1. Plan with your doctor/health care provider. Talk to your doctor and health care team about: How to contact your provider during an emergency and how your provider can reach you.
2. Plan with your family and friends. Make a plan with your family and friends, including your neighbors and have a list of available resources
3. It’s also important to write down information about your diagnosis and treatment in case you have to evacuate. You should know:
- Type of cancer and stage of cancer
- Type of treatment like chemotherapy, radiation, or surgery
- The date of your last treatment and the cycle you are in
- The name of your doctor and treatment center and have all-important contact information written down
- List any medicine you’re taking- medication, dose, and frequency
- Other illnesses or health problems.
4. You should have your insurance card with you at all time.
Other things to keep in mind:
Protect yourself from germs: wash your hands with soap and water as often as possible.
Keep cuts and wounds covered (as directed by your doctor).
If you don’t know if the water is safe, drink only bottled water or boil water for one full minute.
Make a kit with items you may need (dressings, antiseptic, medications, thermometer, etc.). Put them in a zip lock bag to keep them dry.
For more information and resources, visit:
National Cancer Institute https://www.cancer.gov/contact/emergency-preparedness
Ready.gov, an official website of the Department of Homeland Security
Disaster Distress Helpline in case you experience emotional distress (1-800-985-5990 or text "TalkWithUs" to 66746)