Dare DHHS: Review special medical need status, prepare for hurricane season

Published 3:34 pm Wednesday, June 22, 2022

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In times of emergency, Dare County is able to provide assistance to residents with special medical needs, stated a press release from the county. Special medical needs can include physical or mental health disabilities. Individuals with special medical needs could require care and assistance in order to meet basic needs during an emergency situation. People with special medical needs must plan carefully for disasters or other kinds of emergencies.

Examples of persons who may have special medical needs can include, but are not limited to: someone who uses a wheelchair, requires oxygen or has a caregiver.

“This registry allows responders to know where individuals are in our community who may require special help during an emergency. This registry is a valuable tool to help those in need. We want the residents of Dare County to be aware of the availability of this registry so that they can inform their friends and neighbors who may require assistance in a crisis,” said Beth Bradley, adult services supervisor with Dare County Department of Health & Human Services.

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Those with special medical needs – or who know of someone with special needs – and could require assistance with emergency planning and/or evacuating in case of a hurricane or other weather event, should complete the Special Medical Needs Voluntary Registration form virtually at darenc.com/specialneeds. The forms can also be printed from this site, completed and mailed to Dare County Department of Health & Human Services, Attn: Adult Services, P.O. Box 669, Manteo, NC 27954.

For those unable to access the form online, forms can be picked up at Department of Health & Human Services, Social Services Division office locations or mailed upon request. Registering with the Department of Health & Human Services for Special Medical Needs will enable emergency responders to quickly locate participants as well as anticipate and plan for what type of assistance may be necessary.

“The 2022 hurricane season begins June 1 and ends November 30,” commented Greta Sharp, preparedness coordinator with the Dare County Department of Health & Human Services, “This time of year is a great time for Dare County residents to review their special medical needs status, preparedness plans, and stock up on any emergency supplies they may need. Our department also maintains helpful information year round on our website at darenc.com/StormReady that can provide guidance on various public health related concerns that arise before, during, and after a storm.”

For more information on special medical needs registration, contact Beth Bradley at 252-475-5500 or BradleyB@DCdss.org.