diabetic disaster kits

By patchman Latest Reply 2011-06-13 21:38:36 -0500
Started 2010-04-25 19:52:19 -0500


Does anybody have any ideas for disaster kits for diabetics? What to include and how much medications to include. I am a T2 so I dont have to worry at the moment about insulin. I live in an area that gets some pretty wicked storms.

18 replies

patchman 2011-06-13 21:38:36 -0500 Report

Thanks for all the replies. There is some great information and thinking about preparing for disasters.

2011-06-12 14:05:41 -0500 Report

patchman~~ what I think should be in your diabetes disaster kit should be: a glucose meter, an extra couple of vials of glucose monitoring strips. ( xtra lancets) in case you happen to go into a hypoglycemic episodes either some hard candies (a flavor that you like)and/ or those glucose tablets. A glucagon kit. You can get a prescription from your dr. Xtra bottles of medicine. I would also put in stuff that you think you would need in case your b/s rises & goes off the scale that way. I hoped that I helped.

clj01 2011-06-12 11:51:29 -0500 Report

I would like to add my 2 cents for what it is worth. We a re talking about diabetes on this particular question, but I think most diabetics have many other disorders that are just as serious that may stem from the diabetes. When we talk of an emergency kit I think we need to include other meds such as blood pressure medications, heart medications, blood thinners, and meds related to any other potentialy life threatening disorder. In a real emergency such as the tornado in Joplin, people loose there homes and most of what is contained in them. At lleast a minimum of three days worth of prescription meds should carry a person through until they can get a refill on those meds. If we are talking about strictly diabetic type emergencies we need to be prepared for not only low blood sugars but high blood sugars as well. Good luck on putting together your own personal emergency kit.

begonia 2010-05-19 17:06:23 -0500 Report

a glucagon kit could be very helpful,you need a rx but anyone w/diabetes can get one.it's injected glucose that can be administered by practically anyone safely and should you ever pass out from hypoglycemia due to stress of a natural disaster like a tornado it'll save your life when emt's can't get there.liquid glucose squeezable pouches are also great as a faster acting sugar source better than the tabs and they have flavors to.canned pineapple juice very handy also.dole has a high level of sugar and has saved my bacon before and if you look in the stores the shelf life is usual a couple to 3 years so you don't have to "watch it"too closely for expiration.if you have anxiety or panic attacks related to your sugar especially remember to keep your meds for that w/your survival kit so as to prevent hypoglycemic events during a crisis.hope some of this has helped you. p.s. ofcourse put one full weeks dosages of all your meds and if there are anxiety meds take one full weeks max dosage to your kit as they are usually ordered to take as needed up to a certain max times per day because ofcourse the stress would be to the max.

monkeymama 2010-04-29 23:01:38 -0500 Report

Hello there! I have been told to make sure there is at least 2 weeks worth of ALL of my diabetes supplies in a air tight ziploc bag. Along with this you would also need to make sure you add a medical list of all of the medical info (including prescriptions, doctors names & numbers, your other medical info needed).

GabbyPA 2010-04-30 10:03:15 -0500 Report

Yes, we have a vial of life system here. We keep all our info in a prescription bottle that is marked "Vial of Life". One is in the car, one is in the frige as well. It comes with a sticker so you put it on the car and the refrigerator so emergency crews know where to look. I think it would be a great thing to also add to our emergency kits.

2011-06-12 14:14:02 -0500 Report

Hey Gaby, where do you a "Vial of Life" kit anyway? What you suggested sounds like an excellent idea. I would like to follow suit but not sure where to get a "vial of life kit.

Pam from KCMO
Pam from KCMO 2010-04-26 04:02:44 -0500 Report

An excellent question - and an excellent wakeup call. We've got our weather radio, water, some canned food, etc. in the basement but - duh - I never thought about my diabetes supplies! We live in Tornado Alley and get some seriously wicked storms, too.

jayabee52 2010-04-26 01:23:52 -0500 Report

There are a number of resources on the web. I searched for "disaster preparedness for diabetics" and I got 3 pages of listings. Of course not everything on those pages is worthwhile, but some are worth looking at. You will. of course, need to determine what natural disasters are likely to strike your locality, and plan accordingly.

For me, I need to be ready for earthquakes or tsunamis. But tornadoes or hurricanes are highly unlikely in the SF CA area.

Here's a page from the US CDC which has many links to other pages of information: http://www.cdc.gov/diabetes/news/docs/disaste... I think I could get lost in there, there's so much information.

Here's something from Hunterdon Healthcare I just briefly scanned it and it seems worthwhile: http://www.hunterdonhealthcare.org/services/d...

Here's something from Association for Home and Hospice Care of North Carolina which has many links (some of them are repeats from CDC page but has some new info too):http://www.homeandhospicecare.org/disaster/ho...

If you need more than these, just Search "disaster preparedness for diabetics" in any search engine and you'll probably get many pages of suggestions.

Have fun y'all!

MAYS 2010-04-26 00:51:03 -0500 Report

Hello !

That is a very good question worthy of a response.
Your supplies (in an emergency situation) should be two fold (in my opinion).

The only item(s) that you should have to add in an emergency are any items (medications) that must be kept refrigerated, make sure that you have the proper, insulated storage device for items such as these.

Below is attached a basic, generalized one that you can add items to as you see fit.


You should have at least two (2) of these supply kits on hand, stored away at different locations, i.e., car, house, just in case you cannot get to one of them.

It';s always best to be prepared for a given situation rather than to be caught off guard.


GabbyPA 2010-04-26 10:09:12 -0500 Report

This is a fantastic list on that PDF! It is one of the most through lists I have seen for diabetics. Thank you so much for listing it.

I live in hurricane country so we keep our supplies updated all the time. I lived thru Hurricane Andrew in South Florida and then in '04 we went thru 4 storms in one season. It was a lot of good practice. I learned a lot of practical things. But I was not diabetic then...so this is a new ball game for me.

I know we have test strips, an extra meter and a week's worth of meds at least in a back pack and ready to roll. We also have all the tools we use every day along with glucose tabs and some fruit rolls. We write the dates on all of our supplies so I can rotate them.

One important thing is to make sure that you keep on hand things that you normally eat. Practice using foods that you may not eat regularly so you know how to prepare them and what to expect when you eat them for your BG levels. Don't stock up on junk food just because it keeps well. You may have to rotate more often, but keep things that are healthy. You don't want to mess up your levels anymore than will happen just because of the stress.

Another thing we stock up on is charcoal and lighter fluid. If you don't have power, you can't cook. We don't use gas, so we stock up on large bags of charcoal. On a grill, I can do everything from boil water for washing dishes to make rice or bake biscuits. You should practice doing these things as well, just for fun today, because one day you might have to do it for real.

LadyDi - 26259Miller
LadyDi - 26259Miller 2010-04-25 23:35:34 -0500 Report

An excellent question. I live in hurricane territory, so evacuations are not uncommon each year. For a number of reasons, you need to not allow your prescriptions become outdated or your meds to run out. As Roy suggested, it is good to have a prescription for any diabetes meds (or others that are necessary) on hand to take with you in case of emergency. If you use a chain pharmacy, information should be in their computers, no matter where you might have to go.

If you're on any type insulin, there's the problem of keeping it refrigerated, etc. Just be sure to keep enough on hand in the fridge to grab and go if necessary. Even pills would not be good if stored away for long periods of time in a "kit".

It's always good to have emergency kits on hand, not just for your diabetes. Good idea to make a checklist of what you would need if forced to leave, along with emergency numbers of doctors, relatives and/or friends. Hard to think when the time to move quickly comes. Your mind might not be working as it needs to at that point.

jayabee52 2010-04-26 01:34:10 -0500 Report

actually, in reading a bit on the sites I posted above,here is a quote from the CDC: ". . . all of the available insulin products may be left unrefrigerated (between 59 and 86 degrees F) for up to 28 days and still maintain potency." There is more to the quote so I recommend you look at this site from which I quoted for more details: http://www.fda.gov/Drugs/EmergencyPreparednes...

LadyDi - 26259Miller
LadyDi - 26259Miller 2010-04-26 12:39:17 -0500 Report

I'm aware of that, but I was thinking about people just putting the pens into some "kit" and leaving it sitting there indefinitely. Of course that can't be done. You need to have some sort of container on hand to put insulin in (from the fridge) when having to leave on an emergency, etc. This is a good link with good information. Thanks.

Roy531 2010-04-25 21:12:12 -0500 Report

I live in Okla. and I have never thought about that. Good idea. I would think you would need some of you meds something for low sugar like glucose tabs and if you are trapped in a cellar probably need something to eat and drink. and of course a meter to measure your blood sugars. I never really ever thought about it before. If you can get your doctor to write you a spare prescription to carry in you wallet just in case you needed it for your meds.

imsuzie2 2010-04-26 03:13:31 -0500 Report

Roy is definitely on the right track. Also a list of all the meds you take, snacks and water you can change out from time to time, a keytone kit to check your urine if you test high, extra strips and lancets for your meter. Never a bad idea to have a change or two of clothes, a blanket/pillow, shoes and socks, transistor radio, cell phone and charger, some cash in case the electricity is out (ATM's), canned foods that don't require refrigeration or heating (tuna, salmon, canned veggies, fruits) a can opener…I used to live in LA/San Fernando Valley. The Northridge quake of '94 traveled under our house, and the earthquake kit, which was out on the patio, was buried under the roof. Always had water and a solar blanket in the car, and sometimes shoes and socks…but I was younger then, and not a diabetic. Oh, if you have a pet, some pet food and extra water an extra leash or cat carrier, etc!!!

2011-06-12 14:22:12 -0500 Report

Yeah, Roy is DEFINITELY on the right track. I live in wildfire,/earthquake territory. So not only do I need to get extra diabetic supplies, I have to find a fireproof/earthquake safe box. Maybe I'll start looking this week.