Actions for Communities
THE ROLE OF COMMUNITIES: WHAT YOU CAN DO
Communities Can Help Small Healthcare Nonprofits Prepare for
Help nonprofits identify and address Y2K computer and supply chain
Volunteer time and money to help nonprofits prepare for possible Y2K
impacts, e.g., increase their inventory of medical supplies.
Communities Should Determine for Themselves the Readiness of Their Local
Healthcare Institutions to Provide Critical Healthcare Services in Early
Ask the critical health institutions in your community (major HMOs,
hospitals, major clinics, nursing homes) for a written Y2K-readiness
status report. Their status report should minimally include the Y2K
readiness of their information systems, their biomedical devices, their
buildings and their major suppliers. Request that an independent auditor
confirm their readiness. Remember, you are the customer!
Check whether there is there a community-wide Y2K healthcare response
plan that includes the hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, home health
care providers and other critical health providers. Has the plan been
approved in writing by all of the institutions, and does it include
agreements on supply and staff sharing?
Find out who is responsible for Medicaid payments in your community
(state, county, or local government) and ask for an audit that Medicaid
will be paid, and that an alternative plan is in place and tested. Ask
your health institutions how they will stay in business if Medicaid or
Medicare payments are slow.
Make sure there will be a local 30 days supply of critical medications
as of January 1, 2000 and that the nursing homes in the community can
care for their clients in case of a several-day or week-long Y2K
Ensure the Healthcare Needs of the Most Medically Vulnerable Will be
Make sure someone (churches, nonprofits such as Meals on Wheels,
Neighborhood Watch Groups, emergency managers, etc.) knows who the
medically vulnerable people are and where they live.
Have rehearsed plans for helping the medically vulnerable in case of
emergencies or medication shortages.
Tell the Public What the Y2K Healthcare Issues Are, What the Impacts on
Them May Be, and Where They Should Go With Questions or For Help.