Ready at Home = Ready to Work
We*Ready Winter 2013
This Edition's Contents
We've been busy making the We*Ready newsletter better and we hope you enjoy it! From now on, the current edition will be on this page, and previous editions and articles will be accessible from the left hand navigation bar (past editions will be posted shortly). We hope this interface will give you the chance to read about topics of interest and more easily find information! If you've got any suggestions for improvement, send us a message!
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Start the year off right by creating or updating your emergency Go-Kit. Visit Ready.gov for a list of what to include by clicking here. The list is short but the impact is huge, and you'll be glad you put one together if this is the year you need a kit!
If you've got questions or aren't sure where to start, please give our office a shout at email@example.com or x6201.
Get in shape. Spend more time with family. Stop eating ice cream. Okay, eat less ice cream.
Every New Year, people around the world make resolutions to improve their lives. This year, join with Ready.gov and Resolve 2B Ready by taking steps to protect yourself, your family, and your home.
Turn your smartphone into a life-saving tool during and after an emergency or disaster:
Make sure your out-of-area contact's number is up to date in your phone.
An emergency isn't the time to learn Aunt Betsy changed her number.
Learn how to send updates via text and internet from your phone to your contacts and social channels in case voice communications are down. Text messages may get through when phone calls can't connect.
Facebook, Twitter and other social media sites could also help get out the message that you're ok, or you need help.
Store important documents (like personal and financial records) in the cloud and/or on a USB that you keep in your Go-Kit. MyStorage (a.k.a. Box.com) is a great tool to use for this purpose. Don't forget to add the Box App on your smartphone & passcode lock it, so all your important data is safe & secure!
*What counts as an important document?*
- Drivers License, Passport and other ID
- Medical records
- Car insurance and registration
- House lease or mortgage info
- Loan information
- Pictures of your family members & pets (to assist with reconnecting with lost loved ones)
- Go a step further and take pictures and video of your house. If your house is lost or damaged, those visual records will help you get all that you deserve from the insurance company.
Check out the free Red Cross Apps. They've got a First Aid App, Earthquake App, Wildfire App, and more! They also have a website called Safe & Well, where you can post information on your wellbeing for friends & family members to find. Just enter your name and identifying information and post a message!
The Help Bridge App can push out emergency messages to pre-selected contacts, and even give them your GPS location! The App can also push a message saying you're ok, and help you find ways to help after a disaster.
Ready.gov has created a Family Emergency Plan template in GoogleDocs (click here to download it—best viewed in Chrome). Have quick and easy access to your emergency data on any computer (and don't forget the GoogleDrive App!)
The flu comes around every year, but this one is looking to be especially strong. Thirty states are reporting high levels of flu activity, but we've yet to reach the seasonal peak (often in February). The flu hit California later than most of the country, and experts are expecting the number of affected people to rise. What do the CDC and CNN have to say about the flu? Read on, and then wash your hands.
What to know:
- This year's strain: H3N2
- Who is at risk?: Anyone can catch the flu, but it is most dangerous for the young, elderly, and those with an underlying condition.
- What's different about H3N2?: It's more likely to develop complications, which makes people sicker for longer.
How can I prevent getting the flu?
- The flu shot: It's in high demand because getting a flu shot is the best way to stay healthy. Shots are available at the Westmont Health Center (open Monday-Friday, 10 am-12 pm and 1 pm-4 pm) or swing by your local drug store. Not sure where you can go? Visit HealthMap Vaccine Finder and enter your location. They'll give you a list of nearby places where you can get a regular flu shot, an intradermal shot (a thinner & shorter needle approved for ages 18-64), a high dose flu shot (for those ages 65+), and the flu nasal spray (ages 2-49).
- So, if I get the shot, I won't get sick?: That's the hope, but it's still possible for you to get the flu. This year's shot is about 62% effective in preventing the flu.
- Should everyone be vaccinated?: For the most part, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommends that everyone over 6 months old get a flu shot yearly. There are exceptions to this rule, such as people who have a severe allergy to chicken eggs or people with a history of Guillain–Barré Syndrome. For a complete list of who should not be vaccinated, visit the CDC here.
- Can pregnant women get the flu shot?: Yes! Changes to a woman's immune system during pregnancy make her especially vulnerable to the flu and she should get a flu shot as early as possible (just the regular shot, NOT the nasal spray). Click here for more information on the flu and pregnancy.
- Stop the spread of germs: Wash your hands and stay away from people who may be sick,. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth as these are easy portals for germs to enter your body.
I'm not feeling well. How do I know if it's the flu or just a cold?
- It can be difficult to tell the difference. In general, colds are milder than the flu and are more likely to have a runny or stuffy nose. The flu is worse and has symptoms like fever, body aches, extreme tiredness, and dry cough.
- Regardless, if you're not feeling well, stay home and prevent others from getting sick!
I have the flu. Now what?
- Let your supervisor know. Take your sick time. You'll recover faster and avoid spreading the flu to your coworkers. Once you're on the mend, consider working from home until you're fully recovered.
- Don't panic. Most people will be able to recover at home with rest and painkillers to ease muscle aching. Don't forget to drink plenty of fluids! Symptoms usually last for about 7 days.
- When should someone go to the doctor? If you are experiencing shortness of breath or can't keep fluids down due to nausea, visit your doctor. Excessive vomiting or sweating can lead to serious dehydration concerns. The very young and elderly, and those with an underlying condition, can develop complications quickly and should visit the doctor upon the onset of the flu.
I have more questions. What other resources are there?