Learn how to help elderly or disabled citizens in an emergency

Staff Writer
The Chronicle Express

Are you involved with the care of an elderly or disabled person in the community? Do you know what you would do to help this individual if a natural disaster or other circumstances that might isolate that person, or keep you from getting to them to help?

Several types of natural disasters, including ice storms, blizzards, tornadoes and floods could potentially hit, as this past summer proved in the Yates County area.

Along with natural disasters are issues of national security and national health, such as epidemics. Every citizen has been told in one way or another to be prepared for these episodes which may keep someone isolated at home alone, or may necessitate evacuation to a shelter. But how many of us have actually prepared?

These events can be even more serious for those who are frail and disabled who are less able to “wing it.” The frail and disabled living in the community can be dependent on a family caregiver or intermittent help that may not be available in a widespread catastrophe. Lack of planning ahead can become a “disaster” on top of a disaster for the elderly and their caregivers.

An event entitled Caregiver’s Disaster Planning Workshop: Professional Guidance to Create Your Own Plan will be held from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday Oct. 25 at the Penn Yan Firehouse and is free of charge.

The workshop has pooled the expertise of the ProAction Yates County Office for the Aging, Yates County Public Health Emergency Planning, American Red Cross and Keuka College Occupational Therapy to help caregivers learn and design an emergency plan they can take home with them for their elderly care receiver.

The workshop is aimed at family caregivers of the frail and disabled elderly, but anyone is welcome. To register or to get more information, call ProAction Yates Office for the Aging at 315-536-5515.