The Lexington-Fayette County Health Department is opening a special-needs shelter Wednesday morning at Northeast Christian Church, 990 Star Shoot Parkway near Hamburg Pavilion, as part of a state-operated training exercise.
The exercise is testing emergency preparedness in the event of severe weather. Wednesday's scenario involves several tornadoes hitting Georgetown and Lexington, with extensive damage, numerous injuries and some deaths. Actors with various "injuries" were to show up at the shelter as patients.
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In an actual emergency, the department's special-needs shelter would provide basic medical care for those with physical or mental conditions that require limited medical/nursing oversight, including:
■ People with minor health/medical conditions that require observation, assessment and maintenance;
■ People with contagious health conditions that require minimal precautions or isolation that cannot be handled in a general-population shelter;
■ People with chronic conditions who require assistance with activities of daily living but do not require hospitalization;
■ People with regular need for medicine and/or regular vital-sign readings, and who are unable to get them without assistance.
In an actual emergency, those with severe or life-threatening injuries should go to the nearest emergency room for treatment.