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Hurricane Preparedness PlanHurricane Preparedness for the Community

Hurricane season runs June 1 through Nov. 30, with September considered the peak of storm season. It is critical to have an emergency kit and a plan in place well before tropical weather is headed our way. 

In the event of a severe weather threat or emergency, look for updates regarding hospital services on, social media (Facebook, Twitter and Instagram), in local news and via other communications channels.

Medically Dependent Residents Encouraged to Register with Sarasota County

Sarasota Memorial is an acute-care hospital and is not a community hurricane shelter.

Community members with qualifying medical needs who may need to evacuate their home during a disaster are encouraged to register in advance as a medically dependent person (MDP) with Sarasota County's Medical Needs Program; click here. Sarasota County arranges transportation and shelter assignments for registered MDPs. If local evacuations are necessary, Sarasota County may assign certain pre-registered MDPs who require a hospital setting to SMH, based on available capacity. Sarasota County has other assigned shelter locations for people with medical needs who do not require a hospital setting.

For more information about Sarasota County's Medical Needs Program, call Sarasota County at 941-861-5000 or click here. MDPs are advised to register with the county at the start of hurricane season.

Sarasota Memorial will provide the following for qualifying Medically Dependent People (MDPs) assigned to our hospitals:

  • Sleeping accommodations — Because our limited number of hospital beds must be reserved for critically ill or injured patients or patients evacuated from other hospitals, not all who are assigned to Sarasota Memorial as a medical shelter will be placed in a hospital bed. Some will be provided with cots, stretchers or recliners. 
  • Food (predetermined menu) — Sarasota Memorial is unable to prepare special diets for those assigned to our campuses for sheltering. Assigned shelterees and their caregivers should bring food if they have special dietary needs.

Sarasota Memorial is unable to provide sheltered medically dependent residents with:

  • Medications — Bring a supply of your own prescription medications.
  • TV or other entertainment 

*Note that the county also offers last-resort transportation to shelters for non-medically dependent residents. Click here for info.

Sarasota Memorial is Not a Community Shelter

Sarasota Memorial Hospital - Sarasota Campus and Sarasota Memorial Hospital - Venice Campus are NOT community shelter/public evacuation centers. During hurricanes and other critical emergency situations, Sarasota Memoiral may serve as a medical shelter for Medically Dependent People who have pre-registered with Sarasota County and require a hospital setting. 

To ensure adequate facilities, staffing and supplies for emergencies, we must reserve our limited space for patients and Medically Dependent People with qualifying medical needs who are assigned to the hospital. Sarasota County will establish and assign other shelter locations for people who do not require a hospital setting. Click here for info.

Sarasota Memorial Employees

In the event of a hurricane, Sarasota Memorial employees should call the Employee Hotline, 941-917-8799, or visit for updates.