Two men sit by the waterside, contemplating the arriving storm overhead.

Before the Storm

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In the aftermath of recent hurricanes, earthquakes, typhoons and other natural disasters around the world, the ability to respond swiftly and effectively has never been more important.

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That’s why Abbott works with trusted non-profit groups to help communities prepare before the storm–so that they can respond quickly when natural disasters strike.

Since 2006, Abbott has worked with Direct Relief and Feeding America on targeted initiatives that strategically pre-position disaster relief packs containing nutritional and health care products in coastal communities at high risk for hurricanes. The packs are designed to get the right products in the right places before a disaster hits. This “first wave” of relief provides immediate aid until traditional relief efforts come in with ongoing support.

Working with Direct Relief International in the Caribbean and Central America and on the southern coast of the United States, Abbott provides health care products such as diabetes monitors and test strips for disaster relief modules. These modules are given to health clinics and local grassroots organizations that offer community medical care.

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With Feeding America, Abbott provides nutrition relief packs to local food banks in U.S. coastal communities. Designed to be given directly to families affected by disasters, the packs can meet immediate nutritional needs for three days. Tailored to the size of each recipient’s family, the packs contain nutrition bars and rehydration solutions for children and adults.

In recent years, when Hurricanes Sandy, Isaac, Dolly, Fay and Gustav hit shorelines across the region, health clinics and food banks were prepared for the flood of water—and the flood of requests for aid, thanks to these pre-positioned disaster relief packs. The packs were distributed across the region, providing thousands of families with health care and nutrition when they needed it most.

When natural disasters strike, it takes a strong, organized and dedicated response to make a difference. Programs like the disaster relief packs are crucial towards ensuring a faster, more effective response—and sustained relief efforts help communities to recover and rebuild. Taken together, these efforts help sustain and save lives.

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