National Diabetes Coalition Urges Hawaiians Living with Diabetes to Make a Plan to Weather Hurricane Lane
August 23, 2018
As the Hawaiian Islands brace for Hurricane Lane, a category 4 hurricane that could potentially impact Hawaii between Thursday and Friday, the American Diabetes Association® and its partners are preparing to ensure that people living with diabetes, especially those who depend upon insulin, are fully supported. The Diabetes Disaster Response Coalition (DDRC), comprised of the nation’s leading diabetes care and research organizations, is urging all people with diabetes and their loved ones in Hawaii to prepare for Hurricane Lane by putting together a diabetes kit and making a plan to stay healthy and safe during the storm and in its aftermath.
The DDRC has created a Patient Preparedness Plan for people living with diabetes as they face unique challenges during times of disaster. Major storms may knock out electricity for hours, days, or longer, making it difficult to refrigerate or store life-saving insulin. Medication and diabetes supplies may be lost, damaged, or individuals may have run out of medication or vital diabetes supplies. There may be not enough drinking water and healthy food may be difficult to find.
“When life is in a crisis mode, diabetes adds even more obstacles,” says Kelly Mueller, Vice President of Business Integration for Programs and Products for the American Diabetes Association and Co-Chair of the DDRC. “We know securing medication can be a challenge. Our goal as a Coalition is to ensure that people with diabetes have swift and adequate access to healthcare, information and supplies.”
DDRC’s Patient Preparedness Plan also includes a checklist of supplies, information and guidelines to best prepare a person with diabetes in the case of an emergency or natural disaster. The Patient Preparedness Plan and additional information and resources can be found at diabetes.org/hurricanerelief.
“We encourage all health care providers to reach out to their patients with diabetes and urge them to download this plan and put it into action prior to the storm affecting the area,” says Carol Atkinson, Director of Insulin for Life USA and Co-Chair of the DDRC.
In addition, two phone lines are available for individuals in need of assistance:
- 1-800-DIABETES for individuals with diabetes care needs; and
- 1-314-INSULIN for physicians and health care providers to get connected to diabetes supplies.
ADA’s Center for Information, 1-800-DIABETES, is open from 8:30 a.m. ET to 8:00 p.m. ET (7:30 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. CT), Monday through Friday.
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About the Diabetes Disaster Response Coalition
The Diabetes Disaster Response Coalition (DDRC) formed in 2017 in response to a succession of devastating Atlantic hurricanes that impacted the mainland U.S. and territories. DDRC (formerly known as DERC) is a national coalition of nonprofit and for-profit stakeholder organizations that have a direct interest in serving the needs of the diabetes community and/or a role in planning and executing supply chains, public awareness, and healthcare services during times of disasters.
Membership for the DDRC includes the American Diabetes Association, Insulin for Life USA, JDRF, the American Association for Clinical Endocrinologists, the American Association for Diabetes Educators, Beyond Type 1, Endocrine Society, The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust, and T1D Exchange, among many others. DDRC and the Diabetes Patient Preparedness Plan can be found on Facebook.
About the American Diabetes Association
Nearly half of American adults have diabetes or prediabetes; more than 30 million adults and children have diabetes; and every 21 seconds, another individual is diagnosed with diabetes in the U.S. Founded in 1940, the American Diabetes Association (ADA) is the nation’s leading voluntary health organization whose mission is to prevent and cure diabetes, and to improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes. The ADA drives discovery by funding research to treat, manage and prevent all types of diabetes, as well as to search for cures; raises voice to the urgency of the diabetes epidemic; and works to safeguard policies and programs that protect people with diabetes. In addition, the ADA supports people living with diabetes, those at risk of developing diabetes, and the health care professionals who serve them through information and programs that can improve health outcomes and quality of life. For more information, please call the ADA at 1-800-DIABETES (1-800-342-2383) or visit diabetes.org. Information from both of these sources is available in English and Spanish. Find us on Facebook (American Diabetes Association), Twitter (@AmDiabetesAssn) and Instagram (@AmDiabetesAssn)