Aged care sector representatives are armed with the latest information to help prepare for disasters.
It was all thanks to a workshop, hosted by Healthy North Coast in partnership with the NSW SES, to support residential aged care facility managers and community aged care providers to prepare, plan, respond and recover from emergency situations within the community.
The workshop at Panthers Port Macquarie on Thursday, August 31 was one in a series across the Healthy North Coast footprint.
Healthy North Coast's healthy ageing and nurse adviser Bron McCrae said work continues with aged care providers to make sure they are fully prepared, they understand the impacts of severe disasters and what that means for older people.
"It will be a disaster if you are not prepared," she said.
"They need to have their emergency plans in place, ensure they are speaking to their local first responder agencies and work with them and they need to seriously be prepared for power and communication outages and supply chain interruptions."
Lessons learnt from the Northern Rivers flood, for example, show preparation is key.
Ms McCrae said it's really important to reach out to mental health services and to your social network during the recovery stage.
People can also talk to their GPs.
NSW SES community capability officer Travis Douglass encouraged aged care providers to plan now for if and when flooding or storms happen.
Mr Douglass said acting early and knowing what to do in the case of a disaster gives a better chance of people not being in harm's way.
"It also then allows our SES members and volunteers to be able to respond to other requests for assistance that might be more urgent," he said.
Garden Village facilities manager Chris Smith said the workshop was valuable for information, networking and to reinforce the need to constantly review emergency management.
"Our area is very diverse but at this stage I think we are in good stead," he said.
"I believe you are always learning and to come to something like this helps out a lot to improve the business."
The workshop was timely as the NSW SES launched the official summer storm campaign on Tuesday, September 5.
Meanwhile, the response of the insurance industry to major floods across Australia in 2022 will be the focus of a new inquiry by the House Standing Committee on Economics.
The inquiry will take a whole-of-economy view of the ongoing challenges caused by intense and frequent floods.
To kick off the inquiry, an online survey has been launched to hear from people affected by the major floods.
The committee will also accept submissions, which can be made online, until October 31, 2023.
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