Are Kentucky Nursing Homes Prepared to Handle Disasters?

The elderly in Kentucky nursing homes rely on the staff to take care of them under all circumstances—and so they should. At no time is this responsibility more critical than during a disaster. Then, it is especially crucial that staff know what to do to keep their charges safe. 

The federal government requires nursing homes to have an emergency plan, but a recent report by the Department of Health and Human Services discovered that the staff at many U.S. nursing homes have not been adequately trained on how to respond in the event of a disaster. 

Vivian Marinelli, Senior Director of Crisis Management Services at FEI Behavioral Health, suggests that a good emergency plan should:

  • have an all-hazards approach;
  • be approved by the state or local licensing agency;
  • include both evacuation and shelter-in-place plans;
  • collaborate with local emergency management organizations;
  • use available modes of communication, including social media, and have a dedicated emergency line and a wireless line by which residents can contact loved ones;
  • include methods of transporting residents, both by land and by air;
  • have a current list of regularly updated family contact information for each resident; and
  • include a checklist of essential provisions, including a three-day supply of nonperishable food and a gallon of water per day for each resident. 

Additionally, you should have medical records for all residents and a current list of resident-specific items (prescriptions, feeding tubes, oxygen, walker, wheelchair). Of course, make sure that you have batteries, flashlights, first-aid kits, and hygiene materials. 

If the care that your loved one receives in a Louisville nursing home is substandard or even harmful, you may have a Kentucky nursing home lawsuit. Call Gray and White Law at 502-210-8942 or toll free at 888-450-4456 to set up a FREE, no-obligation consultation.

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