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Are You Prepared for an Emergency?

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The extreme weather conditions that have affected so many across the country this week are particularly concerning to those who require electricity to power their supplemental oxygen. Are you prepared for an emergency? Download the COPD Foundation's free Disaster Preparedness Kit and take the following precautions:

  • Prior to an emergency, contact your power company and tell them you use supplemental oxygen. Ask the following: What kinds of services you can expect during an outage? Will your home receive priority service? Will you be informed frequently about repair progress? If the outage is long, will you be provided with a generator? What is the average frequency and length of power outages is in your area and what you should do to prepare for them?
  • Emergency Preparedness

    • Contact your oxygen provider and ask how much oxygen needs to be placed in your home so that oxygen flow is uninterrupted during a power outage. Your oxygen provider has an obligation to maintain your supply during emergencies. Your oxygen provider may set up one or more large compressed oxygen cylinders in your home for emergency use. Prepare the cylinder for quick use during an emergency and label it with its duration. If you receive regular deliveries of liquid oxygen, your provider may choose to set up additional reservoirs, topping them off periodically. Prepare your liquid tank for quick use during an emergency and label it with its duration. When the concentrator stops, you will need someone else to switch you over to the emergency oxygen. Train that person as soon as possible.

    • Consider installing a generator if you live in a remote area and/or you experience frequent power outages.

  • Develop an emergency preparedness plan with your neighbors and reach out to your local police department for emergency support information.
  • Have the following items strategically placed in your home:

    • A battery-powered radio with fresh batteries
    • A cell phone or a telephone that does not need to be plugged into an electrical outlet to work
    • Flashlights with fresh batteries
    • Medications and prescriptions

    While it takes some additional effort, making preparations is crucial as the weather becomes increasingly unpredictable. Remember, no one knows how long an outage will last, perhaps for hours or days. If a power outage occurs, immediately call your power company.

    How do you prepare for an emergency? Share with the community in the comments section below.

    Source: Peter Wilson, founder of "Portable Oxygen: A User's Perspective" at www.portableoxygen.org.

    5 Comments



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    • We bought a few of those small chargers you can use to power up laptops, cell phones, etc. They aren't that expensive and they are valuable even when not in an emergency.
      Reply
    • That's a useful article. Thanks for posting it. May I wish all my fellow COPD sufferers a very peaceful New Year and improved or at least maintained breathing in 2016.

      May you have enough…

      Enough happiness to keep you sweet,

      Enough trials to keep you strong,

      Enough sorrow to keep you human,

      Enough failure to keep you humble,

      Enough success to keep you eager,

      Enough friends to give you comfort,

      Enough wealth to meet your needs,

      Enough enthusiasm to look forward,

      Enough faith to banish depression,

      Enough determination to make each day
      better than yesterday.
      May you have enough...


      Reply
      • Beautifully said! I echo your post and wish you all a happy and healthy New Year.
        Reply
      • Thank you for this lovely sentiment. Happy New Year!

        Reply

    • I have been looking for a high quality NAC product for COPD management, and I found that Bioadvantex has a product called PharmaNAC it is an amazing product. check it out at www.bioadvantex.com
      Reply

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