How prepared are you and your family in case of an emergency? It turns out most of us are not as prepared as we think we are.
The Adelphi University Center for Health Innovation developed a nation-wide poll to gauge emergency preparedness. Results indicated that 44 percent of Americans don’t have first aid kits; 48 percent lack emergency supplies; and 52 percent do not have copies of health insurance documents.
September is National Preparedness Month. On Wednesday, Adelphi University emergency management experts Dr. K.C. Rondello, M.D., M.P.H., academic director of Emergency Management Programs, and Meghan K. McPherson, MPP AEM, coordinator of the Center for Health Innovation and program coordinator for the Emergency Management Graduate Program, spoke to students and the community about emergency preparedness.
Rondello conceded that emergency preparedness seems to be an initiative that is on the back burner.
“It’s important for people to realize that for a relatively minor investment in time and money being prepared can truly pay off when a disaster strikes,” shared Rondello.
According to Rondello Long Island possesses unique features that can pose challenges in the case of an emergency such as the proximity to Manhattan, one of the nation’s largest metropolitan centers, being at or slightly above sea level and, as an island, transportation limits.
McPherson and Rondello emphasized the importance of having a three-day emergency supplies kit consisting of items such as water, non-perishable food, flashlight and a first aid kit.
“Kits can be assembled at home or can be purchased from major retailers or the Red Cross,” McPherson said. "There are also many products out there such as emergency radios that can be helpful.”
Another important factor regarding emergency preparedness is having a family emergency plan.
“Many of us don’t have vital information such as prescriptions and contact information for physicians all in one place,” McPherson said. “We think we are prepared but in many cases we’re not.”
McPherson encouraged attendees to take advantage of all the resources available today. Kit information, family emergency forms and tips can be found at FEMA’s website at www.ready.gov.
The Adelphi University Center for Health Innovation believes that emergency preparedness begins with the community. According to McPherson all emergency management is local. To further support their efforts, the university joined a nationwide effort, the Pledge to Prepare Initiative by FEMA.
“This is just one way for us to show our commitment to students, their families and the greater Garden City community,” McPherson said.
The center is also developing a symposium in February on maintaining health care in an emergency.
Adelphi has had an emergency management program in place since 2004, offering graduate certificates in emergency management to master’s degrees in emergency management.
For further information visit the Adelphi University Center for Health Innovation at chi.adelphi.edu/think-about-it-2.