Hurricane evacuations save lives. But for coastal residents with certain medical concerns or physical challenges and no transportation, evacuation is nearly impossible.
That’s why the community needs to know about the Coastal Health District Hurricane Registry.
The Hurricane Registry is a list of people with specific healthcare conditions who would need help evacuating from the eight Georgia counties nearest the coast, including Liberty and Long counties. The Hurricane Registry for Liberty County is managed by the Liberty County Health Department and the registry for Long County is managed by the Long County Health Department.
“The Hurricane Registry is an important safety net for people with healthcare issues and no way to leave,” said Dr. Lawton Davis, Health Director of the Coastal Health District. “If we know about your individual situation in advance, we can work with emergency managers to develop an evacuation plan for you.”
The registry is not intended for residents with transportation who can evacuate themselves, or residents with friends or family members who can take them to safety. Likewise, nursing home and assisted living residents should not apply, but should follow their facility’s evacuation plan. “If Long County has learned anything over the last couple of years, it is that we are not immune from having to deal with the devastations of hurricanes,” Long County Board of Health member Mike Riddle said in an e-mail. “Please, if you are unable to evacuate during a hurricane, take the time to register. If you are an elderly or disabled person who needs assistance in registering, please contact the Long County Board of Health at (912) 545-2107 and we will make arrangements to assist you.”
Liberty County residents can contact the Liberty County Health Department at (912) 876-2173.
Residents must apply to be on the Registry and can do so by calling toll-free, 1-833-CHD-REGISTER (1-833-243-7344) and following the phone prompts which will connect them directly with their county health department. The application can also be downloaded at gachd.org/registry.
It is also important to note that Registry applications will stop being accepted 72 hours prior to the arrival of tropical storm force winds, according to gachd.org. Residents are urged to plan ahead, before a storm.
For more information on the Hurricane Registry for those with functional, access, or medical needs, go to gachd.org/registry.