The Sunshine Coast’s leading authorities on disaster management have joined forces with local aged care providers to increase education around caring for the elderly when disaster strikes.
Local Disaster Management Group Chair Mayor Mark Jamieson said the Sunshine Coast District Aged Care in Disaster Management Forum being held today (Wednesday, May 15) was an essential step in empowering providers.
“A key recommendation from the Tropical Cyclone Debbie Review (2017) was for all aged care providers to plan for evacuation to a similar safe establishment,” Mayor Jamieson said.
“In late 2018 the Sunshine Coast experienced severe weather that impacted on the Meridan Plains area with a significant grass fire.
“This event involved the near evacuation of a nearby aged care facility, which highlighted the risk of the aged care sector’s ability to evacuate their residents to a similar and safe environment during a disaster or emergency situation.
“Council has worked in partnership with emergency services to hold this forum and provide aged care providers with an opportunity to discuss roles and responsibilities during a disaster or emergency.
“We are asking participants to consider how prepared their facility is to respond to a disaster or emergency.
“We want to be sure they have adequate plans in place to safely evacuate staff and residents while maintaining continuity of care.
“Fortunately, we can draw on the learnings from past events and share resources with each other to enhance disaster preparedness.
“As a community we want to ensure our elderly residents, some of whom are our most vulnerable, continue to be appropriately cared for during a disaster or emergency and that’s why this collaboration is so important.”
The Sunshine Coast District Aged Care in Disaster Management Forum will include preparation discussions, a scenario-based workshop and attendees will hear from an aged care provider about how they now plan for disasters after being impacted by a major event.
Members of the community looking for information about preparing for a disaster or seeking information during a disaster can visit council’s Disaster Hub.
This one-stop-shop includes information on preparing an emergency plan and kit, sandbagging, emergency warnings and road closure updates.