Credit For Caring

Monica Stynchula is the Founder & CEO of REUNIONCare, Inc. a health information technology company REUNIONCare, Inc. an SBA certified Women-owned small business. Monica received her MSW and MPH from the University of Pittsburgh.

Weather You Like it or Not

Wildfires and Air Quality Alerts

Not only have we set a new record for heat, but the number of dangerous air quality days is also skyrocketing.  North America has wildfires burning across the continent.  The air quality for many communities is worse than ever filled with fine particles that enter the blood stream and respiratory system.  When warnings are issued, resist the urge to work or play outdoors. Not all air pollution is the same, experts know that fires contain unseen risk. FEMA recommends you stay indoors, use an air filtration system, and wear a mask.

When Danger is Near, How do Senior Adult Get Out Safely?

The world just experienced its hottest month in recorded human history.  With topsy-turvy weather, it is time for a greater focus on the health-related social needs of vulnerable people and community led evacuation plans when the worst does occur.

Government Rapid Response

The Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA)  operates at the federal, state, and local levels.  Organized by FEMA, the Integrated Public Alert and Warning System is the Nation’s alert and warning infrastructure. It provides an effective way to alert and warn the public about emergencies using the Wireless NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards, and other public alerting systems from a single interface. In addition,  the federal government maintains a centralized data base for Disaster Assistance recovery centers.

Vulnerable People have Elevated Health Risks

Individuals with chronic health conditions and social needs are at greatest risk from these weather events.  Publicly funded weatherization programs, of the past decades, focused on fortifying homes against the cold in northern states and heat in the south.  However, northern homes are now experiencing record heat and lack adequate air flow to reduce the indoor temperature.  People with heart conditions, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and other respiratory diseases are struggling this summer.

Heat Related Deaths

It will be months, if not next year, till we have an accurate accounting of the number of heat-related deaths in the elderly.  Local news stations cover stories of socially isolated seniors who quietly perish at-home.

Create and Share Your Emergency Plan

FEMA lists these important considerations  because your family may not be together if a disaster strikes, so it is important to think about the following situations and plan just in case. Consider the following questions when making a plan:

  • How will my family/household get emergency alerts and warnings?
  • How will my family/household get to safe locations for relevant emergencies?
  • How will my family/household get in touch if cell phone, internet, or landline doesn’t work?
  • How will I let loved ones know I am safe?
  • How will family/household get to a meeting place after the emergency?

Be Prepared.  Be in control.  Be safe.

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