Prepare for an emergency

Well, it is November, and it happened AGAIN! Snohomish county had a major flood. This resulted in closed roads, power outages, no cell service, no home phone service and well, you get it.

You wouldn’t guess that last night we were all wondering how we would get home. In fact, when I heard the emergency broadcast system announce major flooding in Gold Bar, I was out of here!

This got me thinking …. what if we were out of contact for, lets say, 3 or more days? What if I once again forgot to pick up my prescription, and had NONE? Great, I have canned food, but do I have a can opener that isn’t electric?

I know this for sure, even though money is tight, you need to have your medicine cabinet ready for an emergency. An emergency could be similar to what was experienced yesterday. Or, it could be the flu or a family emergency out of town.

Here is a rule of thumb from me – the pharmacy technician and the one at home who gets stuck in the scramble during these emergencies.

  • Your insurance company will let you fill your prescription 5-7 days early.

It does depend on the drug and your plan, but that is a pretty standard thing. If you fill your prescriptions BEFORE you run out (and pick them up), you can easily accumulate an extra week supply.

  • Keep a three day emergency supply of your medications at work, in your purse or in your car.

This is not always ideal, depending on what the storage requirements are for your medications. But, what if you cannot get home? Do you have your seizure medication with you?

  • Keep a medication list with you at all times

Emergency or not, this is a must! Having a list of medications will always help during an emergency, especially if you are unable to speak for yourself.

  • Emergency override

During the fires this past summer, we received notice that insurance companies were paying for early prescription refills if the patient was in an evacuation area. It is important to know that if you are ever displaced, there are options. Be sure to let your pharmacy know what your situation is so they can contact your insurance company. If you are out of town, the pharmacy of your choosing can call your local pharmacy (I hope it is Pharm A Save) to have your prescription transferred. Just remember, depending on the medication, you may not be able to transfer it back. In those cases, your physician can re issue you a prescription to have filled when it is due next.

I could type for days on emergencies. I will say, I don’t have an emergency kit in my car, and neither do my family members. I will have one after this “test run”. Even Tylenol, band-aids, contact solution , pads, eyelash glue – a duplicate of my daily needed items.

Bridget Edgar

Pharmacy Technician

Mother, Wife, Grandmother, Daughter, Friend and MORE


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