The State of Florida requires that the County Emergency Management Departments maintain a registry of individuals requiring special assistance in evacuating and sheltering from hazards. This registry is commonly referred to as the County's Persons with Special Needs Registry. A person with special needs is defined as a person who, during periods of evacuation either mandatory or voluntary, will require assistance that exceeds the basic level of care provided at the general population shelter, but will not require the level of skilled medical care provided at institutional facilities. A person with special needs is included in the vulnerable populations category. Criteria for Special Needs Shelter clients may include, but not be limited to:
- a.) A person with a stable medical condition that requires periodic observation, assessment, and maintenance (i.e., glucose readings, vital signs, ostomy care, urinary catheter)
- b.) A person requiring periodic wound care assistance (i.e., dressing changes).
- c.) A person with limitations who requires assistance with activities of daily living
- d.) A person requiring and needing assistance with oral, subcutaneous, or intramuscular injectable or topical medication.
- e.) A person requiring minimal assistance with ambulation, position change, and transfer (i.e., able to move more than 100 feet with or without an assistive device).
- f.) A person requiring oxygen that can be manually supplied.
- g.) A person medically dependent on uninterrupted electricity for therapies including, but not limited to, oxygen, nebulizer, and feeding tubes. Ventilator dependent persons and persons with multiple special needs requiring a higher level of care may need to be referred to a skilled medical facility
- h.) A person with mental or cognitive limitations requiring assistance, who is accompanied by an appropriate full-time caregiver for the duration of his or her stay in the shelter.
- i.) A person requiring full-time care who is accompanied by an appropriate full-time caregiver for the duration of his or her stay in the shelter.
- j.) A person whose weight does not exceed the safety weight restrictions of provided cots.
- k.) A person who can be safely transferred and does not require specialty lifting or transferring equipment. A person requiring a stretcher to be transported may need to be referred to a higher skilled medical facility.
If you feel that you meet this criteria, then please provide your information in the web form provided. For further assistance please contact the Emergency Management Department at