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Contact Information

Division of Emergency Management
Office of Research Services
National Institutes of Health
Building 45 (Natcher)
Room P1As.14A
Phone: (301) 496-1985
Fax: (301) 402-0167
orsdem@nih.gov

Emergency Numbers

​On Campus
Dial 911, or
(301) 496-9911 from cell phone
​Off Campus
Dial 9-911, or
911 from cell phone
ORS breadcrumbDEM > Emergency Preparedness > Planning for Special Needs

Planning for Special Needs

  • If you or someone close to you has a disability or special needs, find out about special assistance that may be available in your community.
  • Register with the office of emergency services or the local fire department for assistance so needed help can be provided.
  • Create a network of neighbors, relatives, friends, and coworkers to aid you in an emergency. Discuss your needs and make sure everyone knows how to operate necessary equipment.
  • Discuss your needs with your employer.
  • If you are mobility impaired and live or work in a high-rise building, have an escape chair.
  • If you live in an apartment building, ask the management to mark accessible exits clearly and to make arrangements to help you leave the building.
  • Keep specialized items ready, including extra wheelchair batteries, oxygen, catheters, medication, food for service animals, and any other items you might need.
  • Be sure to make provisions for medications that require refrigeration.
  • Keep a list of the type and model numbers of the medical devices you require.

Additional Steps for Special Needs

If you or someone close to you has a disability or a special need, you may have to take additional steps to protect yourself and your family in an emergency.

  • Hearing impaired - May need to make special arrangements to receive warnings.
  • Mobility impaired - May need special assistance to get to a shelter.