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30 October 2020

Emergency planning: All you need to know.

It can be hard to think clearly during an emergency but planning ahead can reduce the stress associated with an emergency situation.

If you or the person you care for become unwell and require emergency treatment, or are called away unexpectedly, having a plan can help to provide confidence and peace of mind.

Proactive planning also assists you to act swiftly if there is a sudden change in your condition or that of the person you care for.

Why plan ahead?

  • It’s easier for someone else to take over at short notice
  • Provides a chance to think through what is the best course of action in advance
  • To feel more prepared in unexpected situations.

What is an emergency plan?

An emergency plan is a document that outlines important contacts, care needs and medical information that become a point of reference in an emergency.

The first step is to identify an emergency contact person who is willing and able to take on your care needs if something unexpected happens. It’s important to ensure you or the person you care for are comfortable with the tasks required before nominating them as a contact on your emergency plan.

What to include in an emergency plan.

Download your free Leap in! Emergency Support Plan template.

An emergency plan should include the following information.

1. Name/s and contact details of:

  • Yourself and your carer
  • Emergency contact.

2. Details about illness or primary disability.

3. Care needs including:

  • Activities or tasks which reqire help
  • Any special equipment used
  • Behavioural challenges and strategies.

4. Contact details for organisations providing regular care and a brief description of the care provided.

5. NDIS Plan and any current Service Agreements if you are an NDIS participant.

6. Medical information:

  • Allergies
  • Medicines taken, including dosage and timing
  • Health information including Medicare number and health fund information
  • Contact details for doctors and specialists.

Emergency respite contacts.

It’s a good idea to include contact details for emergency respite in an emergency plan.

Emergency respite can be arranged by calling the Commonwealth Respite and Carelink Centre on 1800 052 222 during business hours or 1800 059 059 outside business hours.

Where to keep an emergency plan.

Keep your emergency plan in a place that is safe and visible, like on the fridge or a family noticeboard.

Carry a copy with you when travelling and ensure your doctor and emergency contacts have a copy too.

Emergency cards.

Emergency cards help other people to help you, regardless of whether you are a carer or a person with a disability. They can be carried in a wallet or mobile phone case so you always have them when out and about.

Leap in! has created two emergency cards you can download, complete and carry with you:

  • “I support a person with a disability” card – for your name, the name of the person you care for and a person who can be contacted in case of an emergency.
  • “I have a support person” card – include the person’s name, condition or disability, a brief outline of the care required and the carer’s name and contact details.

Download your Leap in! Emergency Card templates.

How the Leap in! app can help.

The Leap in! app can become an important part of your emergency plan. If you’re a Leap in! member and actively using the app, you can invite your emergency carer as a crew member.

You can control which information can be accessed such as your NDIS Plan and medical history, making it easier for them to review the latest information in case of an emergency.

Download the free Leap in! app on the app store, get it on Google Play, or sign up to the web version.


If you are interested in finding out more about how Leap in! plan management could help you, call the Leap in! Crew on 1300 05 78 78,  contact us via our website (online chat available) or email

Further Reading

Caring for yourself when you care for someone with a disability.

Future planning: Being prepared for an emergency situation.

Staying safe at home: How to create a home fire safety plan.