Improve Access: Quick Tips

  • Shop for and save on emergency supplies during tax-free holidays in your state. Learn more about tax-free holidays where you live, and what items are exempt.
  • Learn more about the Emergency Prescription Assistance Programexternal icon (EPAP), which provides people in a federally-identified disaster area who do not have health insurance with access to medical equipment, medical supplies, vaccinations, and a free 30-day supply of prescription medications.
  • Talk to your pharmacist and use the Drugs@FDAexternal icon database to find out if there is a generic version of your brand-name prescription medication. Generic medications are as safe and effective as their brand-name counterparts, and often cost less.
  • Emergency planners: Take a whole community approachexternal icon to emergency planning. Involve local community-based organizations with programs that support populations with access and functional needs, including older adults and people with disabilities, in the planning process.
  • Emergency planners: Make use of tools like Community Assessment for Public Health Emergency Response surveys and technologies like the HHS emPOWER Mapexternal icon to assess local health and communication needs of a community before an emergency.
  • Emergency planners: Include children’s needs in emergency exercises and planning. Children require special attention in all areas of response planning, including evacuation, safe sheltering, reunification, and recovery.
  • Health communicators: Take practical steps to develop communications, products, and tools that all people can easily find, understand, and use to prepare and protect their health; for example:
    • Design materials in alternative formats (e.g. Audi-formats, Braille, large print, signed and captioned videos) for people with visual, auditory, intellectual and motor skill impairments, who may not be able to access information on the web, even with the use of assistive technologies.
    • Make sure information on the web is 508 compliantexternal icon.
    • Write in plain language.
  • Health care professionals: Take the Blue Button Pledgeexternal icon to improve patient access to and use of electronic health recordsexternal icon. Electronic health records can make it easier for patients to check their records, share health information, and prepare for an emergency.
  • Health care professionals: Improve patient access to naloxone. CDC recommends that you educate patients at risk for opioid overdose and their loved ones on naloxone, its use, and where to get it.
  • Talk to health care professionals about telehealth (i.e., the delivery of healthcare through technology, such as mobile phones or computers) and prescription pickup and delivery options for yourself and those you take care of, including older adults and people who have transportation or mobility issues.
Page last reviewed: October 1, 2020, 01:20 PM