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24 Common And Frightening Concerns Elderly Disaster Victims Face

The elderly are a part of the population that is the most vulnerable during times of evacuation and emergency. They face many concerns both before a disaster strikes and immediately afterward.

The elderly are a part of the population that is the most vulnerable during times of evacuation and emergency. They face many concerns both before a disaster strikes and immediately afterward.

The need to protect the elderly during a disaster is not going unnoticed either. “These catastrophic events have taught us we have to pay greater attention to evacuating, identifying, and ensuring the safe return of the thousands of frail older adults living on their own or in care facilities,” said AARP CEO William D. Novelli. “Much of the suffering and loss was undoubtedly preventable, and it must not be allowed to happen again,” Novelli said in a report which was written in response to photos of the elderly suffering in 2005 after Hurricane Katrina [1].

The statistics speak for themselves.  In Louisiana in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, roughly 71 percent of the victims were older than age 60, and 47 percent of those were over the age of 75. Most of these victims died in their homes and communities; at least 68—some of whom were allegedly abandoned by their caretakers—were found in nursing homes. About 15 percent of Americans who are aged 50 or older say they would not be able to evacuate from their homes without assistance in the event of a natural disaster; of that 15 percent, half would require help from someone outside the household.

As a whole, 81 percent of Americans age 50 or older say they are “confident” or “very confident” in their ability to evacuate; however, 14 percent are only “somewhat confident,” and 3 percent are “not at all confident.” Those who are age 75 or older more frequently said they would need help evacuating [1] (25 percent versus 13 percent of persons age 50–74). They are also less confident in their ability to evacuate than are their younger counterparts.

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These are the 24 most common concerns the elderly face in times of disaster and emergency.  Please bear in mind, not all of these may apply to your loved one specifically, but if any do, consider taking measures in your personal prepping planning to accommodate older family members if you can.

24 Problems the Elderly Face

PART 1: Medical Conditions

 PART 2: Sociodemographic Characteristics  

Part 3: PSYCHOSOCIAL CHARACTERISTICS 

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All of these concerns should be kept in mind especially if you’ve got an older family member who will need your help in the event a disaster strikes.  Use these concerns as a guide so your loved one isn’t left on their own.

 

 These are the 25 most common concerns the elderly face in times of disaster and emergency. Please bear in mind, not all of these may apply to your loved one specifically, but if any do, consider taking measures in your personal prepping planning to accommodate older family members if you can.