Planning for an emergency
As a carer, someone depends on you.
We understand many carers manage with very little or no help but may be concerned if an urgent situation stopped them from caring. For that reason, Devon Carers encourages all carers to have some sort of contingency plan in place in case they are in any way incapacitated.
What is a contingency plan?
A contingency plan is a record that needs to contain basic, useful information to help others when looking after the person (or persons) you care for, whether it is family, friends or even emergency support services.
For some carers a contingency plan can be as simple as having someone nominated who will act as a carer in your place.
For others a little more planning might be required to ensure that the needs of the person you care for are understood and met. For some, particularly those who are caring for people with severe or complex needs, a contingency plan may include pre-arranged support from statutory or private agencies.
The information you include needs to be simple and informative, with enough detail to enable others to understand what is needed in your absence.
You may wish to consider including some of the following:
- What conditions your cared for person has
- Where their medication is and where is it kept?
- What routines does your cared for person have
- Does your cared for person have any dietary requirements?
- Are there any communication or mobility issues?
Devon Carers can provide a simple contingency plan form for you to complete and keep at home. We will send you a copy of a contingency plan form with your Alert Cardform – however if you would like a copy please get in touch via webchat, email or our helpline.
If you need help thinking about and making your contingency plans we can arrange for one of our team to help you.
To find out more about contingency planning:
What shall I do once I have completed the plan?
Most importantly, keep it somewhere where you can find it – you will need to keep it updated if circumstances change. It is also a good idea to have a way to let people know where your plan is kept.
We recommend the Message in a Bottlescheme.
The Message in a Bottle scheme is a simple idea designed to encourage people to keep vital lifesaving information in a common place, the fridge, where it can easily be found in the event of an emergency.
Two labels, one on the inside of the front door and the other on the fridge, alert the emergency services or family and friends that this information is available.
To find out more: http://www.lions105sw.org.uk/district-projects/message-in-a-bottle/
“Being prepared can’t stop emergencies happening but it can make them a little bit easier to cope with at a time when you need it most”