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Active Living
Full Listing with story descriptions
A Healthy Balance
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Active Kids, Healthy Kids
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Ask the Doctor
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My Doctor Says I Need a Test
Childbirth
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Alcohol in Pregnancy
Building a Better Baby
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Sex During Pregnancy
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Smoking and Pregnancy
Support During Labour
Travelling While Pregnant
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When Baby Comes Home
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Not Just Baby Fat
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Full Listing with story descriptions
Introduction
Managing Your Pain
Movement Matters
Moving Forward
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Opioids
Pacing
Pain Medications
Prevention
Returning to Work
Understanding and Goal Setting
When Pain Doesn't End
Dental Health
Full Listing with story descriptions
Antibiotics and Dental Surgery
Baby Bottle Tooth Decay
Baby Teeth
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Choosing a Dentist
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Headaches
A Healthy Mouth
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Orthodontist First Visit
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Seniors Oral Care
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The Smile You Want
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Smiling through the Senior Years
Teeth for Life
Temporomandibular Disorders (TMD)
Tobacco Risks to Oral Health
Tongue Piercing
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Travel Dentistry
Water Fluoridation
Wisdom Teeth
Your Healthy Smile
DIABETES
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10,000 Steps
A1C Test
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Alchohol and Diabetes
A Diabetes Success Story
ABCs of Diabetes Management
Alternate Site Testing
Artery Health
ASA Therapy
Benefits of Insulin
Benefits of Breakfast
Blood Glucose Medications
Blood Glucose Myths
Blood Glucose Testing
Blood Glucose Testing Tips
Blood Sugar Lows
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C-Peptide Testing
Canada Food Guide Revisited
Carbohydrate Counting
Catastrophic Drug Plan
CDA Guidelines for Diabetes
Celiac Disease and Diabetes
Celebrating Health
Childhood Diagnosis of Diabetes
Children and Type 2 Diabetes
Cholesterol-lowering Medications
Colds and Diabetes
Constipation
Continuous Blood Glucose Monitoring
Cutting Edge
Dangers of Uncontrolled High Blood Pressure
Debunking Diabetes Myths
Driving and Diabetes
Diabetes and Menopause
Diabetes and OTC Medications
Diabetes Care Team
Diabetes and Celiac
Diabetes and Depression
Diabetes Diet
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Diabetes Eating on a Shoestring Budget
Diabetes Etiquette
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Diabetes and Your Mouth
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Diabetes in Cats
Diabetes in Dogs
Diabetes Management ABCs
Diabetes Meter Technicians
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Diabetic Ketoacidosis
Diabetic Retinopathy
Diet Tips for South Asians
Dining Out
Drinking and Diabetes
The Discovery of Insulin
Eating Disorders
Easing the Strain of Stress
Eating to Protect Your Kidneys
Eating Well During Shift Work
Eggs in a Diabetic Diet
Emotional Eating
Emotions of Diabetes Diagnosis
Erectile Dysfunction
Exercise Excuses
Why Fad Diets Fail
Fats
Fibre
Fill Your Day with Energy
Financial Support for Diabetes
Food Temptation
Foot Care
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Gestational Diabetes
Get Active
Get Physical
Gift Ideas
Glucose Meters
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The Glycemic Index
Going Green in the Kitchen
Grocery Shopping Tips
Guidelines for Diabetes Management
Holiday Party Survival Guide
Health Information on the 'Net
Healthy Happy Holidays
Healthy Beverage Choices
Health Benefits of Soy
Healthy Restaurant Meals
High Blood Pressure and Diabetes
High Blood Pressure
HbA1c Test
Healthy Eating for Active People
High Blood Lipids
Home from the Hospital
Home Alone and Sick
Hypoglycemic Unawareness
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Immunization & Diabetes
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Insulin Discovery-The Story
Insulin
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Insulin - the Key to Energy Management
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Internet Health Sites
Islet Cell Transplantation
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Kidney Disease - Reducing the Risk
Living with Diagnosis of Diabetes
Living Powerfully with Diabetes
Low Blood Glucose
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Managing Blood Glucose
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Meal Planning
Your Medication Expert
Medication Research Studies
Metabolic Syndrome
Microalbuminuria
New Diabetes Technologies
Natural Medicines and Diabetes
No Need for Insulin?
Not Snoozing
Over-the-Counter Medications
Oral Health and Diabetes
Osteoporosis and Diabetes
Diabetes and OTC Medications
Pedicure Precautions
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Pet Diabetes
Planning for Pregnancy
Prebiotics and Probiotics
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Putting off Insulin
Reducing Stress of Surgery
Safe and Successful Travel
Schizophrenia and Diabetes
Sensible Snacking
Setting Health Goals
Setting Goals for Physical Activity
Sharps Disposal
Shorter Insulin Needles
Sleep - a Missing Link
Smart Snacking
Smart Summer Nutrition
Snack Bars
Snacking with Diabetes
Sodium
Social Media & Diabetes
Solving the Insurance Puzzle
Stress and Diabetes
Success in School
Supplements
Supporting Spouse with Diabetes
Sweeteners
Sugar, Carbs and Blood Glucose Control
Think Positive with Diabetes
Tiny Bites Equal Big Calories
Travelling with Diabetes
Tips for a Better You
Tobacco Use and Diabetes
Top 10 Reasons to Exercise
Treating Low Blood Glucose
Treating Hypoglycemia - Role of Glucagon
Tune up Your Diet
Type 1.5 Diabetes
Type 2 Diabetes
Understanding Diabetes
Understanding Diabetes Medications
Understanding Ketones
Used Sharps
Urinary Incontinence
Vacationing with Diabetes
Vegetarian Eating for Diabetes
Vitamin D
Walking
Wise Choices About Natural Medicines
Wonderful Water
Natural Medicines & Diabetes
World Diabetes Day
Your Medicine Cupboard
Zimbabwe Hand Jive
Family Medicine
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ADHD in Children
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Antibiotic Use
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Aspirin Every Day?
Asthma
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Back Pain Myths
Back Pain - Lower
Birth Control
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Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Check-Up
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Contact Lenses
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Doctor Visit
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Do I Need an Annual Physical?
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Family Doctor
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5 Ways to Stay Healthy
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Get Active!
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Medical Digital Technology
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Win by Losing
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Get Active!
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Have Health, Will Travel
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Skin Over 50
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Travel Tips for Snowbirds
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Aging and Memory
Alcohol and Your Health
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Bisphenol A
Canada's New Blood System
Caring for a Loved One Dying at Home
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Computer Stress
Coping With Change
Cosmetic Surgery
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Depression
Diabetes Epidemic
Discipline
Diseases from Pets
Downsizing
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Flu Pandemic
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Ice Safety
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Mature Student
Melamine in Food
Middle Age Health
Mind-Body Connection
Mom Time
Money Matters
Outdoor Workers and Sun Safety
Patient Safety in the Hospital
Pets and Health Benefits
Pet Therapy
Physiotherapy Visit
Planning for End of LIfe
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Safe Drinking Water
Schizophrenia
Smokeless Tobacco
Sexually Transmitted Diseases
Soy
Stigma of Mental Illness
Street Drugs
Stressed or Depressed?
Stress in the Workplace
Stress Leave
Swim to Survive
Sunburn
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Travel Health Protection
Travel Comfort Tips
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Understanding Change
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Whiplash
Wind Chill Index
Workplace Drug Testing
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Nutrition
Full Listing with story descriptions
5 Tips to Manage Weight
10 Ways to Cut Down on Fat
Battle the Bulge
Boost Your Bone Strength
Body Image
Breakfast is Important
Bowel Health
Building Your Bones
Celiac Disease
Challenging the Milk Myth
Diet Reality Check
Drink Up!
Eating Smarter & Cheaper
Energy Drinks
Food Allergies
Food for Active Kids
Fast Food
Food Labels
Giving Up Gluten
Healthy Diet, Healthy Smile
Healthy Eating for Boomers and Zoomers
Healthy Eating for Seniors
Healthy Eating on Business Travel
Healthy Ethnic Meals
Fad Diets
Fruits & Veggies - 5-10 a Day
Fats
Fat Phobias
Fats & Cholesterol
Feeding Your Kids
Fibre
Food Chemistry 101
Food and Mood
Getting Kids to MOVE
Healthy Eating for Teens
Healthy Habits
Herbal Medicine and Nutrition
New Ingredients for Your Shopping Cart
Iron
Kid's Food
Liquid Candy
Meal Planning with Planned Overs
Mercury Levels in Fish
Night Snacking
Night Shift Eating
Nutrition on the Net
Nutrition Myths Busted
Nutrition Questions Top 5
Nutrition for Menopause
Essential Omega-3
Preventing Cancer Through Nutrition
Picky Eaters
Power of Fruits & Veggies
Portion Control
Power Lunch
PMS and Nutrition
Preparing for Surgery
Probiotics
Reducing High Blood Pressure
Replacement Meals
Sensible Snacking
Sodium
Sodium and Blood Pressure
Sports-Minded Nutrition
Sugar Substitutes
Survive and Thrive
Teen Nutrition
Tips for a SuperDiet
Understanding Food Biotechnology
Vacation Eating
Vitamins D
Vitamins and Minerals
Vegetarian Diet
Weight Loss
Weight Wise Tips
Pharmacy Care
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After a Heart Attack
Adverse Drug Reactions
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Allergy Attack
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New Anticoagulant Medications
Inhaled Asthma medications
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Biologics
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Blood Thinners
Calcium and Iron Supplements
Changing Role of the Pharmacist
Children's Cold Remedies
Child's Fever
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Constipation and Haemorrhoids
Diuretics and Potassium Supplements
Drug Recalls and Withdrawals
Drug Interactions
Emergency Contraception
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Expanding Role of Pharmacies
Eye Protection - Sunglasses
Feminine Hygiene
Generic or Name Brand?
Heartburn
Heart Health
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Kids and Cold Medications
Medication Questions?
Metabolic Syndrome
Natural Medicines
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Over-the-Counter Drugs and Pregnancy
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Packing Medications for Travel
Pharmaceutical Studies
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Research Studies
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Sports & Nutrition Supplements
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Your Best Shot
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Prevention
Full Listing with story descriptions
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Antibiotic Resistance
Backpack Pain
Bacteria Fight Back
Bedbugs
Disaster Planning
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Caffeine
Cell Phones and Driving
Childhood Obesity
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Cold and Flu Season
Disaster Planning
Diseases from Pets
Distracted Driving
E-cigarettes
Farm Safety for City Kids
Foodborne Illness
Flu Pandemic
The Flu and You
Heading Home for a Visit
Health Tips for Snowbirds
Hearing Loss and Music Players
H1N1 Virus - Plan Ahead
Household Mould
Infection Control
Injury Prevention
Live Actively!
Insect Repellant
Keys to Preventing Cancer
Kids' Mental Health
Live Actively!
Low Birth Weight
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Are Pesticides Safe?
Preventing Burns and Scalds
Preventing Cancer through Nutrition
Quit Smoking 101
Respiratory Infections
Seniors and STIs
Should You Immunize?
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Surviving Disaster
Sushi Preparation
Teens, Drugs and Driving
Travel Health Considerations
Travel Medicine 101
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Type 2 Diabetes Prevention
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Workplace Alcohol Abuse
Women's Health
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15 Great Reasons to Breastfeed
Anemia
Approaching Menopause
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Breast Cancer - Genetic Risks
Breast Cancer Self-Exam
Breast Cancer Screening Guidelines Changes
Breast Health
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Contraception for Mature Women
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Estrogen's Effect on the Brain
Fear of Fracture
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Hirsutism - Unwanted Hair
Hormone Replacement Therapy
The IUD
Menopause - What Men Should Know
Menstrual Bleeding - Abnormal
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Menopause
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Third Generation Birth Control Pills
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Family Health Magazine - PREVENTION

Surviving Disaster
Are you prepared for an emergency?

Is it just our imagination, or is the world becoming a more dangerous place to live? Tornadoes, floods, earthquakes, ice storms, huge forest fires and terrorist attacks have all made recent headlines. It seems not a week goes by without bad news from some part of the world grabbing our attention. If you think things are getting worse, you aren’t being paranoid. They are worse for several reasons.

Home Emergency Supplies

  • Drinking water: a supply of two litres per person per day in sealed, unbreakable containers. Drinking water should be replaced every three to six months.
  • Water for food preparation and sanitation; two litres per person per day
  • Supply of non-perishable food that requires no refrigeration, cooking and little or no water. Ready-to-eat canned meats, fruits, vegetables, juices, soup, honey, peanut butter, crackers or cereal will work. Check expiry dates and replace with fresh stock as needed.
  • Supply of specialty foods for infants, elderly people and others who may be on special diets
  • Pet food
  • Comfort or stress relief foods like cookies, candy, or instant coffee
  • Hand operated can opener, disposable cups, plates, knives, forks and spoons
  • Waterproof matches, candles, tin can, and garbage bags
  • Battery operated flashlight, radio and extra batteries
  • First aid kit: include an extra pair of eyeglasses, any medication or vitamins, and important medical information like a list of prescription medications, the family doctor’s phone number, and the style and serial numbers of devices like pacemakers.
  • Warm blankets and a change of clothing and shoes for every member of the family
  • Extra car/house keys, extra cash
  • Adequate supplies for an alternate source of heat that can be used safely in the home (wood for a wood burning fireplace, for example)
  • Toilet paper and other personal supplies
  • Whistle
  • Playing cards, a few small books and toys

First, the earth is undergoing significant weather pattern changes. It doesn’t really matter whether this is a result of global warming or not. The fact is, across the world weather disasters are becoming more regular and having a greater effect on humanity. ‘Flood of the Century’ and ‘Worst Storm in 200 Years’ are typical headlines.

People are also challenging nature. Urbanization is concentrating people in a smaller area, magnifying the effects when a disaster strikes. Amazingly, some people insist on ignoring dangerous situations, defying common sense by living on flood plains, in the middle of tinder-dry forests, and on the edge of cliffs. When you take on Mother Nature, you never win.

Finally, the nature of international conflict is changing. War was once confined to the battlefield; now it has entered our communities. What once only threatened soldiers now affects us all. The possibility of a terrorist attack, while remote, still exists.

Despite the overwhelming nature of most disasters, steps can be taken to minimize their effects and increase the likelihood of survival. Fortunately many of these steps are simple and inexpensive. Coupled with common sense (for instance, not building on the edge of a cliff), they can reduce the effects of the disaster.

Disaster preparedness works from the bottom up. The first line of defence and preparation is at the individual and family level, followed in turn by the neighborhood, municipality, province, and finally the national and international level. Each level complements and supports the others. Together, they form a strong disaster readiness web.

Every family and individual should have a disaster plan. These simple plans should be something everyone, including children, can understand. Remember, even a simple house fire would be a disaster for your family. Most municipalities and provinces have excellent websites and brochures that outline the steps for individual and family disaster preparedness.

Simple things can improve your ability to survive a disaster:

Neighborhoods provide an excellent structure for disaster preparedness. During the snowstorms that hit Victoria in 1996, neighbours banded together to shovel snow off roofs, clear streets and check on their neighbours. Communicate now to save time later. Who has an emergency generator? Who has an SUV, and knows how to use that snazzy winch on the front bumper? Do you have a doctor or nurse living on your street? Do you have neighbours that need specialized medical support such as dialysis or are physically challenged? There is strength in numbers. If you don’t have an existing neighborhood organization that can be used to do some disaster planning, approach your local government to set something up.

If the disaster exceeds the ability of the individual, family and neighborhood to respond, the next level is the municipality. Every municipality is required to have a disaster plan. This plan assesses vulnerabilities – the existing threats to the community. Guidelines for declaring a local state of emergency, specific disaster tasks for municipal departments, co-ordination of utilities, health support and other agencies, and contact numbers are all outlined. This plan should be publicly available, either in printed form or on the municipal website. As well, most communities have volunteer organizations such as Search and Rescue, Amateur Radio,
the Salvation Army, and St. John Ambulance that give you the opportunity to participate in disaster preparedness.

If a municipality is unable to fully deal with a disaster, the next level of assistance is the province. Provincial emergency management organizations (EMOs) will activate provincial emergency plans and will co-ordinate support from other municipalities and from provincial resources. For example, both Vancouver and Calgary have well-trained Heavy Urban Search and Rescue Teams which can be requested through the provincial EMO.

Finally, in those rare events where the scope of the disaster overwhelms even provincial resources, the federal government, through the Office of Critical Infrastructure Protection and Emergency Preparedness, will coordinate support. Federal resources, the Canadian Forces, other provinces, and even other countries may be involved. Since September 11, 2001, great efforts have been taken at the national level to improve our disaster preparedness, particularly in response to a terrorist attack.

Have a personal or family emergency plan. Organize your neighborhood to respond to a disaster. Be aware of your municipal disaster plan. In the event of a disaster, a little preparation can go a long way.

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FAMILY HEALTH is written with the assistance of
Alberta College of Family Physicians
FAMILY HEALTH is written
with the assistance of
The College of Family Physicans of Canada
Alberta College of Family Physicians
While effort is made to reflect accepted medical knowledge and practice, articles in Family Health Online should not be relied upon for the treatment or management of any specified medical problem or concern and Family Health accepts no liability for reliance on the articles. For proper diagnosis and care, you should always consult your family physician promptly. © Copyright 2015, Family Health Magazine, a special publication of the Edmonton Journal, a division of Postmedia Network Inc., 10006 - 101 Street, Edmonton, AB T5J 2S6    [PR_FHc03]
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