If you or someone you know has a functional need, like trouble seeing, hearing, walking or medical problems, you might have to do more to be prepared for an emergency.

2010 NAACCR Revisions

IF YOU HAVE CHILDREN:Mother breastfeeding a baby

SMALL CHILDREN may need: formula, diapers, bottles, medications, wipes, baby food, extra water, toys, books.

Breastfeeding can save lives and keep your baby healthy during an emergency. Breastfeeding protects babies from the risks of contaminated water. It also protects your baby from breathing problems and diarrhea - diseases that can be deadly in a disaster. Breastfeeding is especially important if there is a loss of power, water and other services. For more information, go to www.usbreastfeeding.org.

DAYCARE/SCHOOL-AGE CHILDREN: If there is an emergency while your child is in school or daycare, those places will have plans to protect your child. You should know what the plan is before an emergency happens.

2010 NAACCR Revisions

IF YOU ARE ELDERLY:Elderly couple looking at computer

  • If you use a home health care agency, make sure they know your family’s emergency plan and who you would like to be contacted in the event of an emergency.
  • Tell other family members where to find emergency supplies and teach them how to use any special medical equipment.
  • Put your name on special equipment like wheelchairs, canes or walkers.

2010 NAACCR Revisions


  • Get other family members and friends to help in case of an emergency.
  • Tell other people where you keep your emergency supplies.
  • Give one person you know and trust a key to your home.
  • Wear a medical alert tag or bracelet so people know what your disability is.
  • Show other people how to use your special medical equipment.
  • If you have medical equipment that needs electricity and you have to evacuate to a shelter, bring an extension cord with you.
  • If you have medical supplies delivered and have to evacuate or stay somewhere else temporarily, let you medical supply company know where you are staying. This lets them deliver you the medical supplies you need.
  • If you need dialysis, find out where there are dialysis treatment facilities nearby.

If you have to stay in a hotel or motel, make sure you tell the people at the front desk that you will need help if there is an emergency. Tell them what kind of help you might need.

Your city or town might keep a list of people with functional needs so that they can be found quickly and helped in an emergency. Call the local emergency management director or fire department in your city or town and ask them how they can help you if there is an emergency.

2010 NAACCR Revisions

Make an “Emergency Health Information Card” for yourself and write down the following information:

  • Your name, address and phone number.
  • Your disability.
  • The name, address and phone number of a doctor, friend or family member who knows you and your disability.
  • What others need to know about you if they find you unconscious or unable to talk to them, or if they need to move you out of your home quickly.
  • Medical needs:
    • medicine or special equipment you need
    • allergies or problems to medicines
    • problems you have talking to people or understanding them
    • type of treatment you need.
    • who you want to treat you
    • language(s) you speak

Make many copies of this card and keep it in your emergency supply kit, in your car, in your wheelchair pack, at work, and in your wallet (behind your driver’s license or identification card).

Download a blank "Wallet Emergency Card" here. (Fillable format, pdf, 118KB - works best with Internet Explorer)

2010 NAACCR Revisions


  • Mom comforting childTell children it’s okay to go back to school and do other normal things like playing with friends. Tell
  • Ask your children to talk about anything that scares them. Let them ask questions and tell you how they’re feeling. Talk together as a family about the emergency.
  • Give children plenty of love. Tell them they are safe. Hold and hug them a lot.
  • Tell children what is happening in simple words so they can understand.
  • Make sure they know that the emergency is not their fault.them they can talk to their teachers about the emergency, too.
Supporting Children After Disasters/Crises (10:59)

Learn to live prepared. Click here to download guide.