A special needs shelter is a shelter of last resort for people who need more medical supervision than a general population shelter can provide due to special medical needs, but they do not require hospitalization. A person with special needs is someone who during an evacuation, either mandatory or voluntary, will require assistance that exceeds the basic level of care provided at the general population shelter, but they will not require the level of skilled medical care provided at institutional facilities such as hospitals and nursing homes.
Registration is voluntary. This registry is for planning purposes only and will NOT initiate any automatic services on behalf of the registrant. Assistance needed by individuals must be initiated at the time of need by the individual by calling local officials when evacuations have been ordered. All registrations expire after one year and must be updated on the anniversary of the registration.
Special Needs Registry
Those who have discussed sheltering options with their physician or caregiver and who may consider themselves to be special needs are asked to pre-register with the Public Safety Department online here:
Should you have any questions, you may call 850-471-6400.
Once it has been determined the special needs shelter will open, spaces may fill quickly. The special needs shelter does not accept reservations nor does the registry save shelter spaces for individuals.
Special Needs Shelter Eligibility
Click here to view a general guide to determine which shelter you may qualify for during disaster evacuations. This list is meant to be utilized as a guide for planning purposes and is not all-inclusive. Everyone will be medically screened upon arrival at the special needs shelter for proper shelter placement.
Click here for Florida Department of Health Information Regarding the Escambia County Special Needs Registry and Public Shelter Program