Dealing with Emergencies on Board
We will never know the real happenings of the events that took place in the previous post, unless we were flies on the wall. But whatever the outcome of the story, it is important that every cruiser have a plan for emergencies as unlikely as they are to occur. Remember the fire escape routes that every person is expected to practice with the family? What about checking on the nearest exit in the airplane? Similar precautions should be taken by cruise passengers, in addition to those instructions given at the mandatory muster drills.
If you have serious medical issues, it’s important to make note of them and let the medical facility onboard know about these issues. Please do this far in advance especially if you must travel with certain equipment like oxygen.
- Just as you bring copies of your birth certificate, drivers license and passport numbers with you, you should carry a list of your medications as well. Of course, if you have certain allergies or conditions, you may already be wearing a bracelet indicating your special needs.
- Your first contact with a non-emergency medical condition should be the medical clinic onboard. If you feel that your needs are not being met (this is the case with any problems that you are experiencing on the cruise), please contact the purser who will refer you to the proper staff. Don’t be satisfied with inaction. Your life could depend on it.
- In an emergency situation, call 911 immediately. If for any reason there is no response,(this is unlikely to be the case) notify the purser and enlist the help of fellow passengers.
- Be honest with yourself. If you have a severe medical condition, you are putting both yourself and other passengers at possible risk if you decide to cruise. Read the fine print in the cruise contract.
- Remember to remain calm and advocate for yourself. This isn’t always simple in the face of adversity and when you are emotionally stressed. Try your best to keep your cool, at the same time constantly monitoring the situation and being sure that things are progressing in a satisfactory manner.
- Consider insurance that covers you for the cost of evacuation, medical treatment or anything else related to a medical problem. For instance, if you have medical insurance, you may be less hesitant to visit the clinic outside of regular hours.
Now, don’t get all stressed obsessing about the possible medical emergencies that could happen to you onboard. The likelihood of such things happening are small for the healthy individual, but can happen to anybody. If you already have a serious condition, don’t take chances.