Planning for Emergencies
Sometimes the strain of caring continually for someone else can be difficult. Let us help.
An emergency can happen at any time and it is important that you know where to turn and have the peace of mind to know that you have plans in place should you be unable to continue your caring role.
As a carer you need to know that if an emergency happens, replacement care will be arranged speedily and efficiently.
When you care for someone, life cannot simply be put on hold when the person you are looking after relies on you for vital help and support.
If you’re facing an emergency, you need to know that replacement care will get sorted out quickly and efficiently. For many, this will involve contacting a family member, friend or neighbour who is willing to cover in an emergency. If you have no one to turn to, call the government’s helpline on 0800 028 8327 or visit gov.uk/coronavirus-extremely-vulnerable to register for the support that you need. You could alternatively seek help through your most local Covid-19 Mutual Aid UK group.
See the Enfield Carers Centre information about Coronavirus outbreak.
Creating an Emergency Plan
This section suggests things you can do to create an emergency plan.
We advise all carers to create an emergency plan – for you and all those you look after. Having a plan in place can help ease your worries if you are not able to care for those you look after at any point in the future.
In order to create an emergency plan that fits your needs, you will need to consider:
- details of the name, address and contact details of the person you look after
- who you and the person you look after would like to be contacted in an emergency – this might include friends, family or professionals
- details of any medication the person you look after is taking and where it is stored
- details of any ongoing treatment they need
- noting details of any allergies
- details of their GP and pharmacy
- any ongoing treatment they need
- any care and support services they receive
- any continence products needed and who supplies them
- any mobility challenges and mobility aids such as a wheelchair or hoist
- anything behavioural others need to be aware of.
Having this important information in one place could be of immense support and help when needed at a critical time, when time might be limited. Talk about the plan with the person you care for, if possible, and also with those you would like to be named emergency contacts.
It would also be useful to share it with trusted family members or friends and healthcare professionals. Give people a copy of the plan – or let them know where they can find it and make sure the information is regularly updated.
You can download this Emergency Plan Template to create your own emergency plan.
Some other useful tips
Think about whether there are alternative ways of getting shopping to the person/people you care for. Trusted neighbours or local support groups such as Covid-19 Mutual Aid UK group could help with the practicalities of this.
Prepare a single hospital bag for the person you look after. This should include their emergency contact, a list of the types of medication they take (including dose and frequency), any details of planned care appointments and things you would need for an overnight stay (snacks, pyjamas, toothbrush, medication etc). If they have an advanced care plan, please include that. You could also prepare one for yourself if you feel that you are at higher risk from Coronavirus. See the Gov.uk list of those who are at higher risk.
You could sign up to a repeat prescription delivery service if the person you care for is reliant on regular prescription medication. For further guidance see https://www.nhs.uk/apps-library/echo/