Many people face extra challenges in preparing for and responding to a public health emergency or natural disaster. At Public Health we consider the needs of every resident during an emergency. As we prepare, we listen to people who face barriers of language, poverty, social or cultural or physical isolation, and inaccessibility related to specific needs. We also work with community partners to provide timely and effective information and services to every resident during an emergency, including those hardest to reach.
Resources for at-risk populations
- Chronic medical conditions
- Developmental disabilities
- Languages other than English
- Parents and pregnant women
- People with disabilities
- Service animals and pets
- Washington Emergency Resource Guide
Chronic medical conditions
Kidney disease and end-stage renal disease
- National Kidney Foundation. This is the main Web site for one of the major non-profit organizations working to assist people with kidney disease. They offer specific emergency-preparedness information here, including optimal diets in an emergency.
- Northwest Renal Network. This network provides locations and addresses for dialysis centers in Washington and neighboring states that plan to operate in an emergency, along with other resources concerning kidney disease.
Mental health and chemical dependency
Deaf and hard of hearing
Blind and visually impaired
Getting ready for emergencies (PDF) is a brochure prepared by the New Jersey Council on Developmental Disabilities
Be prepared kit is a brochure prepared by the State of Ohio agencies responsible for disability and aging services and Ohio’s Developmental Disabilities Network.
Community-based organizations and service providers. This Web site from disability policy expert June Isaacson Kailes includes guides, listings, and documents concerning emergency preparedness for CBOs, child care centers and homes, long term care, evacuation for persons with mobility limitations, etc.
Languages other than English
People who read languages other than English can download and print a Family Emergency Plan in 18 languages from the Preparedness section of the Publications index page of the Washington Emergency Management Division.
Parents and pregnant women
The American Academy of Pediatrics provides many resources concerning Emergency Preparedness for Children with Special Healthcare Needs. The information includes a very useful Emergency Information Form (PDF) that you can download and print, along with instructions on how to use the form.
The American Academy of Pediatrics Family Readiness Kit can be downloaded and printed. The Kit includes eight sections that help you with different parts of preparing for and coping with emergencies.
The Pregnancy and Newborn Health Education Center from the March of Dimes provides a detailed section of their Web site Prepare for Disaster: Special Information for Families with Infants or Anyone Caring for a Newborn.
The American Academy of Pediatrics, Preparedness for families with children includes resources about breastfeeding.
Information for families that use child-care providers is also for child-care providers.
People with disabilities
Emergency Evacuation Preparedness Guide: Take Responsibility for your Safety. This guide from the Center for Disability Issues and the Health Professions provides a step-by-step, comprehensive approach to understanding and preparing for the challenges that emergencies create for people with disabilities.
Disaster Preparedness For People With Disabilities (PDF) is a 48-page guide from the American Red Cross that you can download and print. The American Red Cross Web site also provides many other tools and resources for individual and family emergency preparedness.
Organizations that serve people with disabilities can download and print this nine-page Agency Emergency Plan
(PDF), and use it to develop their own disaster-preparedness plans. It was produced by Collaborating Agencies Responding to Disasters, a California-based service organization. CARD provides many links to other organizations and to specific information for emergency preparedness and disaster relief.
ADA design requirements for accessible egress. This information helps organizations determine the minimum requirements and the best methods for improving access for people with limited mobility.
Service animals and pets
The U.S Government emergency preparedness Web site, Ready America, provides information on Pet Items and a Community Pet Preparedness Toolkit to help people with service animals and pet to prepare for emergencies.
The American Council of the Blind provides Emergency Preparedness for Your Service Animal or Pet (PDF), which you can download and print. This brochure focuses on assisting people who are blind and visually impaired, and also has useful information for anyone with a service animal or pet.
All of these brochures have useful checklists to guide you on the information and emergency supplies you need to gather in preparation for an emergency.
Washington Emergency Resource Guide
Washington Emergency Resource Guide (PDF) This guide covers many aspects of emergency preparedness for individuals and families, including specific sections concerning vision and hearing impairments, specific medical needs, and mobility limitations. You can download and print this 48-page guide both in English and in Spanish (en Español). It is produced by the Washington State Department of Health and the Washington Military Department Emergency Management Division.