Seeking shelter from the storm

Monday, January 31, 2005

In the Nov issue of HME News and apparently the Medtrade show version, there was an opening article about the show. Although I wish I could have been there in Oct., I couldn’t because I had been there in September. Your article states a simple ending phase that the convention center had been used as a …”shelter for displaced hurricane victims”. Having been there, it was more than a simple shelter. It was going to be potentially the largest “special needs” shelter in U.S history. Fortunately, it never had to be used to its full capacity since Ivan went west and hit the Panhandle. However, we still served a couple hundred residents who needed Medical help, not just food, water and a roof over their heads. The amount of DME supplies that was mobilized to meet the expected needs of the individuals was amazing.

In the end there were more than 300 healthcare professionals from around the country who responded to this “shelter”. Most of them ended up assisting with Florida residents in the Panhandle area before returning home.

- William C. Drake, Pharm. D.,chief pharmacist, Frances / Ivan Hurricane Deployment 2004.