The American College of Endocrinology (ACE) and Lilly Diabetes recently launched the "EmPower Diabetes Emergency Plan" – a newly designed resource to help people with diabetes prepare for emergency situations – big or small.
The EmPower Diabetes Emergency Plan represents a new phase for the program, previously known as the Diabetes Disaster Plan, originally launched by ACE and Lilly Diabetes in 2006 following Hurricane Katrina. The new plan extends beyond natural disasters and encourages people with diabetes to be prepared for other types of unexpected situations.
Natural disasters have already been prevalent in 2012 with a record-breaking number of tornadoes in the U.S. and more than 15,000 warm temperature records broken nationwide.
These natural disasters are obvious emergencies, but even the unanticipated, everyday circumstance can become an emergency for someone with diabetes if they find themselves without proper supplies or medication.
"The health of a person with diabetes depends on discipline, balance and good decision making – things that tend to suffer when stressed by an emergency," said Dr. Lawrence Blonde, MD, FACP, FACE. "We hope the resources we've created, when implemented, will help people rest easier knowing that if they need to act, their emergency kit with the necessary supplies to maintain their health is ready. That way, they can focus on managing, or in some instances, surviving, the situation at hand – especially when seconds count."
The new EmPower Diabetes Emergency Plan, available in both English and Spanish, comes in a tear-proof, waterproof format that folds into a credit card-sized brochure which can help facilitate easy reference from a wallet or purse. To order hard copies of the checklist, visit www.EmPowerYourHealth.org.
In addition to the new checklist, ACE and Lilly Diabetes also released a four-minute "how-to" video that showcases how quick and easy it is to prepare an emergency kit in advance. The clip provides step-by-step instruction, based on checklist information, and can be viewed by logging onto www.EmPowerYourHealth.org.
Some of the recommendations featured in the video include packing:
- A list of medications
- Prescription refills
- Healthcare professional contact information
- A separate supply of medications and testing supplies
- Food and water
"Lilly Diabetes is committed to providing real solutions for people with diabetes to use in their everyday lives – particularly when those lives are threatened by disasters or other unexpected events," said Dr. Jeffrey Jackson, senior medical advisor, Lilly Diabetes. "Our partnership with ACE allows us to fulfill that promise and help people with diabetes and their families ready themselves for the unexpected so their health may be protected regardless of the situation."