“No one likes to think about disasters, but we all need to be prepared,” said Paul Harris, Lake Regional Community Benefit and Emergency Preparedness coordinator. “We don’t know when a disaster will strike, and that can make it easy to procrastinate. Instead of saying, ‘I’ll take care of that later,’ get ready now, or at least schedule a specific time in the next two weeks for preparing.”

To help you start your New Year right, Lake Regional Health System is providing education to Lake Sun readers on various ways to be healthier in 2018. For more tips, check your mailbox for Lake Regional’s January Thrive magazine.
The New Year is a time to look ahead. Although we’d like to focus just on good things that might come our way, it’s a good idea to prepare for possible hard times, too.
“No one likes to think about disasters, but we all need to be prepared,” said Paul Harris, Lake Regional Community Benefit and Emergency Preparedness coordinator. “We don’t know when a disaster will strike, and that can make it easy to procrastinate. Instead of saying, ‘I’ll take care of that later,’ get ready now, or at least schedule a specific time in the next two weeks for preparing.”
Making up a family emergency kit is a great family project. Pack items in containers that are easy to grab and carry, such as a duffel bag or one or two camping backpacks.

Begin with these basics:
•A three-day supply of water (about 1 gallon per person per day) and nonperishable food.
•A can opener and utensils for cooking and eating.
•Sanitation and hygiene items, such as toilet paper.
•A flashlight and extra batteries.
•A hand-crank or battery-powered radio.
•Extra clothes and shoes.
•Photocopies of important documents, such as emergency contacts, insurance policies, birth certificates and a list of medicines.
•A first aid kit.
•A multipurpose tool.
•Blankets or sleeping bags.
•Duct tape and plastic sheeting, in case you need to shelter-in-place.
•Missouri map.
•Any special items, such as medicines, baby formula and pacifiers, or food and water for pets.

Keep the supplies in a cool, easy-to-access spot and replace the food and water every six months. Rethink the kit once a year to keep up with your family’s changing needs, advises the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
For more ideas — including a list of first aid essentials and winter storm safety tips — visit the Lake Regional Health Library at www.lakeregional.com/healthtips. Select “Disaster preparedness” from the topic menu.