Evaluating Online Disaster Preparedness Training for Family Caregivers of Senior Citizens

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Chartrand, Grant
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According to the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), more than half of the casualties from Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy were senior citizens, and many died from avoidable injuries. As climate change is predicted to increase the frequency and intensity of natural hazards such as hurricanes, tornadoes, and floods, communities must plan for an increasing senior population with many now opting to live with their adult children. Seniors are more vulnerable to hazards due to economic, medical, social, cognitive, and physical issues. Precautions taken in advance of disasters can greatly reduce senior citizen casualties. Having an understanding of disaster preparedness is key to building resilience and mitigating impacts. Family members who take on caregiving responsibilities may not have access to or time for formal training in disaster preparedness. Thus, the purpose of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of an online module, created with Articulate and Canvas, to train participants on the special preparedness needs of elderly family members. Participants completed the module, including pre- and post-surveys and an assessment. The project used Baldwin and Ford’s transfer of training theory (Baldwin, Ford, & Blume, 2009). Participants can use the knowledge gained from the module to enhance their ability to support senior citizens. The presentation will show parts of the module and discuss the findings from the evaluation.