Creating a plan in the case of emergency

Creating a plan in the case of emergency

If you live with a disability or are in a caring role, preparing for an emergency such as bushfires, floods, and the current coronavirus outbreak will help when things can become overwhelming. 

Key Points:

  • Preparing in advance for an emergency helps you and the person you look after remain safe 

  • An emergency care plan should include detailed information to help someone taking over care duties.

  • A carer card helps identify a carer and the person that they look after

Creating an emergency care plan

Emergencies can happen at anytime to anyone. It could include the person you care for being ill, injured, or their mental health getting worse or yourself not being well. In the cases of natural disasters or other major events, it can also include not being able to stay in your own home. 

Preparing in advance for an emergency helps you and the person you look after remain safe and ensures the person you look after has the care they need. 

An emergency care plan should include detailed information to help someone taking over care duties. 

A care plan should include things such as:

  • Personal information about you or the person you care for including name, address, age, health condition.

  • Emergency contact details, including family, friends and health providers. List their names, phone number and relationship to you. When including emergency contacts ensure that they understand the commitment and types of tasks they may need to perform. 

  • Medical history including, allergies, treatment plans, medicines, prescriptions and any other relevant medical information. 

  • Details of the types of care needed. This could include things such as what they usually eat and drink and details of personal care routines.

  • Upcoming appointment dates, times and locations. These could be medical appointments or appointments with regular support services.

  • Anything else you think someone taking over for you in a hurry would need to know.

​Carer emergency card

As a carer, there may be times when you are involved in an emergency situation and you need to identify yourself as a carer of someone with a disability.

One of the ways you are able to do this is through an emergency carer card, which lets others know that you are a carer and that somebody relies on your care.

This card should include the contact details of people who have a copy of your emergency care plan and anyone else who can help the person you care for.

The card should be carried by you as the carer and the person you care for should also carry a copy.

Using your emergency care plan

To make the transition of care easier in an emergency make sure you give a copy of your plan to each of your emergency contacts, doctors, or anyone else who may need to know what to do in an emergency. 

You should update your plan every year or sooner if there are significant changes in a caring situation or in your health.

A copy of the original plan should be kept in a safe but visible place at home to ensure it is easy to find.  Important documents such as wills, guardianship and powers of attorney should also be kept with the emergency care plan.

You may want to take a copy of the emergency plan with you when you leave home or travel with the person you care for.

In an emergency contact your doctor or if it is urgent contact 000.

If you need respite care for the person you look after

Templates for filling in an emergency care plan can be found online