No one wants to think about being injured or ill on a family vacation. Nevertheless, whether your entire family, or just one or two members, are going on a vacation, it is important to plan for illness or injury. Some estimate that a trip to the emergency room happens on 25% of all family vacations. There is no way to predict a sudden illness or accident, but there are ways to plan for emergencies. These actions can be divided into two categories — before the trip and during the trip.
Before the TripThe bulk of preparing for an emergency during a vacation happens before you embark on the trip. Here are some ways to prepare for emergencies:
- Emergency Medical Kit: When packing for a vacation, it is smart to include an emergency medical kit in your suitcase. This can include any prescription medications you or a family member takes, pain relievers, allergy medication, band-aids, ointment, and a thermometer. In addition to medicine, include copies of immunization records, doses of prescription medication, and recent surgery or treatment information.
- Research: In addition to looking for the best attractions and hotels at your destination, you should take note of the nearest hospital. Additionally, find out if your doctor is available to take a call in the event of an emergency.
- Insurance: Depending on the destination of travel, medical standards might not be the same as what you are used to, and your usual health insurance may not apply. Travel insurance can provide peace of mind when traveling through different locations.
During the TripWhile the bulk of preparation takes place before a vacation starts, you still need to be cautious during your travels. Just because you have planned for emergencies does not mean you can predict an illness or injury. While on vacation it is important to:
- Inspect your surroundings: Take a look around your hotel for any obvious dangers, childproof anything you can, and make sure that windows and doors are locked for safety.
- Stay on Alert: An injury can happen anywhere. As such, it is imperative that you do not let your guard down and look out for any sudden dangers. Staying alert also helps in the even that something does happen because you can react quickly and appropriately to get the injured or ill individual the necessary help.
Image courtesy of Simon Migaj