Healthcare Ready Hurricane Ian Situation Report #1

Hurricane Ian Situation Report #1

This report provides an assessment of the impacts to healthcare and public health due to Hurricane Ian.

Note: Green text indicates new or updated content in this report compared to the previous report.

Healthcare Ready's Posture

Healthcare Ready is ENGAGED for the response to Hurricane Ian. We are closely tracking potential impacts to healthcare infrastructure and supply chain, and will share information frequently via situation reports and TwitterFacebook, and LinkedIn. Our pharmacy operating status map Rx Open will be updated daily for pharmacies in Florida and Puerto Rico. As of 2pm ET 9/19, 28% of pharmacies are reporting as Open in Puerto Rico. 67% of USVI pharmacies are reporting as Open. 

High-Level Situation Summary

Hurricane Fiona made landfall in southwestern Puerto Rico at 3:20 pm ET on September 18, 2022. Prior to landfall, Fiona produced heavy rains and high 90-mph winds across Puerto Rico and USVI. Hurricane Fiona will continue to impact the Dominican Republic today (9/19) before grazing Turks and Caicos on Tuesday (9/20). Following this, the storm is expected to enter the open Atlantic and will not be a threat to land. A flood warning remains in effect for Puerto Rico until Monday, September 19, 09.15 pm AST/EDT. A flood watch is in effect until Tuesday, September 20, 08.00 pm AST/EDT.

Puerto Rico has been heavily impacted by Hurricane Fiona. Parts of the island have experienced up to 27 inches of reported rainfall, which is projected to rise. The most impacted areas of the island are the southern, southwestern, and central mountain regions of the island; these areas are currently most susceptible to flooding. As the precipitation continues in the mountainous areas, flooding may be seen in areas of the north.
Flooding and wind have led to major impacts on Puerto Rico’s power grid, leaving most areas without electricity. Road conditions have also been impacted by the storm. Reports of direct impacts to healthcare operations have been minimal so far, but additional assessments are in progress. However, some indirect impacts to continuity of care are expected due to impacts to road conditions and power.  
U.S. Virgin Islands Governor Albert Bryan Jr. Virgin Islands Territorial Emergency Management Agency (VITEMA) and the Virgin Islands Water and Power Authority (WAPA) reported that Hurricane Fiona left minimal destruction in the territory, and the territory is not reporting any safety hazards at this time.

Assessment of Healthcare and Logistics Impacts

Emergency Declarations and Measures

  • Puerto Rico Governor Pedro Pierluisi declared a state of emergency on Saturday, 9/17.  on Saturday, 9/17.
  • Governor Pierluisi issued an Executive Order OE-2022-048 granting immunity to physicians, osteopaths, nurses, physician’s assistants, and health professionals assisting the government during the duration of the declaration of emergency for Hurricane Fiona.
  • On Sunday, September 18, 2022, President Biden approved an emergency declaration to provide federal assistance and resources in response to Hurricane Fiona.

Critical Infrastructure Impacts

  • Power
  • Fuel
    • The availability of fuel seems to not have been impacted by Hurricane Fiona, but accessing fuel may pose a problem while roads and other major infrastructure are obstructed by debris or water.
    • There have not been reports of generator fuel shortages for healthcare facilities as of this report. However, if power outages remain widespread and are in effect for an extended period, generator fuel availability may become an issue.
  • Transportation

Access and Reentry

  • There is no formal access and reentry program in Puerto Rico. All 78 municipalities of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico are tasked with coordinating specific access and re-entry requirements for vehicles transporting staff, supplies, and other essentials in close coordination with the Government of Puerto Rico and federal agencies.

Healthcare Response Updates and Needs

    • Emergency Medical Services
      • No impacts to emergency medical services have been reported as of this report. However, disruption to patient movement can be expected due to road conditions and closures.
    • Healthcare Facilities
      • According to local outlets, all but one hospital are relying on generator power, while one is still connected to the national power grid.
      • The Hospital Association of Puerto Rico is periodically posting updates on operating status on their Facebook page.
      • Hospitals in the Ponce, Mayaguez, Cabo Rojo, Yauco, y San Germán regions should take extra caution with the care of their patients and their power supply as they are still under heavy rainfall. Cancellations of surgeries and elective appointments are likely to be cancelled.
    • Health Clinics
      • The status of free and charitable clinics and federally qualified health clinics are unknown at this time as damage assessments are underway. Healthcare Ready is working on mapping the operating status of these facilities once information is received.
      • As these clinics support the medical needs of the uninsured, the status and operations are critical to serving those impacted by Hurricane Fiona.
    • Pharmacy
      • Rx Open is activated for Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands. The map was last updated at 2 pm ET, September 19. As of this update:  
        • 53.46% of participating pharmacies in Puerto Rico were reporting Closed or Unknown.
          • Only 27.98% of pharmacies are reporting as Open in Puerto Rico.
        • 9.52% of participating pharmacies in USVI were reporting Closed or Unknown.   
          • 66.67% of pharmacies are reporting as Open in the USVI.
    • Dialysis
      • Dialysis facility operations are stable, with no unmet needs reported.

COVID-19 and other Infectious Diseases

  • COVID-19
    • As of September 18, CDC reports medium community spread throughout most of Puerto Rico, with low community spread in in six municipalities including Vieques. Also on 9/18, CDC reported 304.9 new cases in Puerto Rico and 9,728 cases total.
    • With people entering shelters due to the hurricane, there is a higher potential for COVID to spread and possibly increase throughout the island.
  • Monkeypox
    • CDC reports 163 cases in Puerto Rico as of September 19.  There is minor risk of more infections due to people entering shelters after the hurricane.
  • Leptospirosis risk
    • No risks reported today. Due to contaminated water from flooding, there is increased risk of this illness spreading throughout the island. We are monitoring for reports of spread of leptospirosis.

Supply Chain

  • Manufacturing
    • No updates since 9/27.
    • Florida has a relatively large pharmaceutical and medical devices manufacturing footprint, with most companies concentrated in northeast Florida (near Jacksonville). Though not anticipated to have direct impacts from the, the region is still expected to experience heavy rainfall with the possibility of flash flooding.
    • Florida has a moderate plastics manufacturing presence. Should the state be unable to supply power to these manufacturers, due to impacts to critical infrastructure caused by Ian, it is possible upstream medical supply could be impacted in the coming months. This analysis of potential impacts is based on the observed impacts to plastics following the severe winter weather that affected Texas in 2021.
    • No major disruptions to PPE manufacturing, or downstream impacts across the US are anticipated from this event.
  • Distribution
    • No updates since 9/27.
    • Many of the medical product distributors as well as third party logistics providers have operations and/or distribution centers in Florida. We will be closely tracking any impacts to facilities or centers to determine any downstream supply chain impacts.

Resource Staging

  • FEMA’s Sunday, September 18, announcement states that federal emergency aid is available to the Government of Puerto Rico, due to the approved Federal Emergency Declaration. The declaration ensures coverage of 75% of protective measures and relief by federal funds. Funding may be used a variety of resources, including for flood fighting, EOC costs, emergency access, supplies and commodities, medical care and transport, evacuation and sheltering, search and rescue, use of temporary generators, childcare, and safety assessments.
  • FEMA Region II’s Incident Management Assistance Team (IMAT) is deployed to USVI. The National IMAT Blue is deploying to Puerto Rico. Additional FEMA assets are also being deployed to Puerto Rico.
  • The HHS Secretary’s Operation Center (SOC) is activated at Level II.
  • 600 Members of the National Guard are involved in the search and rescue operations in Puerto Rico. The members of the National Guard were prepositioned Friday, September 16, to nine points throughout the island to tend to emergencies as they arise.
  • New York will send 100 members of Spanish-speaking members of the state police, and 50 troopers and is organizing community partners to drive donations to assist the government of Puerto Rico. Full statement by Governor Kochul is available on the New York State website.
  • Pennsylvania’s Governor Wolf announced that two members of Pennsylvania Task Force 1 (PATF-1) Urban Search and Rescue (US&R) are deployed to Puerto Rico to support response operations.

Emergency Prescription Refills

  • There are no reported curfews at this time.  
  • No major evacuations at this time, however, many water rescues have been reported.

Evacuations and Curfews

  • As of 9/28, the following Florida counties have issued mandatory evacuation orders: Charlotte County, Citrus County, Clay County, Collier County, Flagler County, Hernando County, Hillsborough County, Lee County, Levy County, Pasco County, Pinellas County, and Sarasota County.
    • Mandatory evacuations are in effect for most of the West coast of Florida and portions of northeast Florida.
  • As of 9/28, the following Florida Counties have issued voluntary evacuation orders: Clay County, Franklin County, Gilchrist County, Glades County, Highlands County, Manatee County, Nassau County, Polk County, Putnam County, Orange County, Seminole, St. Johns County, Taylor County.
  • As of 3pm EDT 9/28, there are no curfews in Florida.


  • There are 132 shelters in Puerto Rico open to receiving those that have been affected by the hurricane. Currently, there are over 2,000 residents at the various shelters. We expect to see shelter residents to increase over the coming days.
  • The shelters with the highest populations are in the areas with catastrophic damage, including Arecibo, Canovanas, and Guayanilla.
  • No information available on special needs/medical shelters at this time.



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