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Hurricane Health Needs: How to Prepare for a Dangerous Storm

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It’s hurricane season, and most coastal-area residents know the routine for storm preparation: stock up on bottled water, nonperishable food, flashlights, batteries and a transistor radio. 

However, they may be forgetting one important step. Planning ahead for day-to-day and unexpected health needs is important and in some cases, life-saving. 

UnitedHealthcare of Texas and Oklahoma CEO Dave Milich knows firsthand what it is like to experience a hurricane. Dave, based in UnitedHealthcare’s Houston office, witnessed the effects of Hurricane Harvey. The devastating storm caused catastrophic rainfall and unprecedented flooding, displacing tens of thousands of UnitedHealthcare employees, customers and members whose homes sustained significant damage. In the days and weeks following the storm, he and his team offered help to community members affected by the storm, many of whom had misplaced their health insurance information. Since then, Dave has been helping to spread the word about how to prepare for hurricane season from a health perspective.

Here are Dave’s Health Care Hurricane Preparedness tips: 

  • Locate health insurance cards and pack them inside an emergency go-bag, a bag that you can take with you in the event of an evacuation.
  • Refill medications and medical supplies so that you have at least a seven-day supply.
  • Make sure you have a first aid kit with instructions.
  • Check with city, county and state government officials to register family members with special heath needs for emergency transportation assistance.

It’s important to note these health care tips are just part of an overall hurricane preparedness plan. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has additional information on preparing for a hurricane or tropical storm.