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Caring in a Crisis: Nursing Home Emergency Preparedness

The vulnerability of nursing home residents became a national issue when thirty-five individuals at one facility perished during Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Since the beginning of 2012, there have been nineteen Federal Major Disaster declarations alone. Whether it is the result of severe storms and flooding as we witnessed most recently in Minnesota and Florida or the wildfires in Colorado, people have had to evacuate their homes and sometimes their communities for their own safety. Many individuals and families have emergency response plans that they have developed to use as a resource during these difficult times. However, who plans for the family members living in assisted living facilities or nursing homes?