How Oncology Nurses Can Assist in the Wake of Hurricane Harvey
Wednesday, August 30, 2017
ONS sends its thoughts to those impacted by the devastating floods that continue to displace and threaten thousands.
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As news continues to emerge about the devastating damage from Hurricane Harvey, ONS sends its thoughts to those impacted by the devastating floods that continue to displace and threaten thousands. Countless emergency workers and healthcare professionals are devoting their time, efforts, and personal safety to help those in need. Institutions in the area, including MD Anderson Cancer Center, are being shut down, leading to countless patients with cancer displaced in the wake of the storm. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) declared a public health emergency in Texas and Louisiana, which provides for flexibility in documentation for Medicare benefits to allow displaced patients to have better access to uninterrupted care.
National organizations like the American Red Cross, the Salvation Army, and the AABB—who coordinate blood collection efforts during disasters—are currently accepting donations for the victims of Hurricane Harvey. Additionally, HHS has more than 550 personnel available to help state and local authorities respond to healthcare needs. Local organizations like the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund, the Houston Humane Society, and the Houston Food Bank are accepting donations to assist the greater Houston area. For those currently in the area and with the ability to help, the South Texas Blood and Tissue Center is reporting a critical blood shortage and is operating with extended hours in the San Antonio area. Carter BloodCare also covers hospitals in North, Central, and East Texas and is accepting blood donations.
Any ONS members in the affected areas who are looking for ways to help can report to your local Red Cross affiliate.
As the storm makes second landfall in Louisiana, thousands more may be affected in the coming days. ONS will continue to monitor the situation as it develops.