How to Prepare your Home for a Pandemic

How to Prepare your Home Quarantine During a Pandemic or Outbreak

The CDC has confirmed - the Wuhan Coronavirus is here in the US!  Check out our guide below to ensure you and your family are prepared ahead of time for any potential outbreak, present or future.

For most Preppers, disaster preparedness is often modeled after those big threats that we can see coming. Big physical threats like hurricanes, power outages, or something like an economic collapse. These threats stand out and they are scary because of their size and power. Its easy to understand the importance of preparing for these things. Unfortunately few consider events like flu pandemics (the one in 1918 killed nearly 50 million world wide) or more recently the bird and swine flu, or even Ebola. 

What makes the threat of a pandemic unique is that we cannot see it coming. It can be on the plane, right next to us, and we would not know it. Until an outbreak begins its hard to understand how a pandemic is traveling or the true diagnosis.

In the early 2000s the Avian Flu jumped species and killed nearly 70-80% of the people infected. This highly communicable disease can jump from poultry to people and for that reason it’s a terrifying example of a possible pandemic. To keep the infection risk down Europe and Asia killed an estimated 150 million birds with symptoms or signs of the illness.

Around that same time, we saw the emergence of SARS or severe acute respiratory syndrome. This disease was much more effective. It originated in South China and killed 774 people in its short reign. 

If not for the tremendous doctors and scientists who work to eliminate the risks of these diseases, we would have suffered much more severe losses. Neither of these were pandemics because they didn’t have the chance to cross international borders. 

What happens with a pandemic during a collapse?

While many may look at these recent examples of pandemics or outbreaks, as something that was just a blip on their radar, unfortunately it can get much worse.

What happens when a disease shows up that we cannot control? 

When you walk through the steps leading up to a pandemic disaster, it can start rather benign and then, quickly, get out of control. 

After the first 10,000 people are sick you are going to see headlines everywhere. We saw that when it came to the Ebola in the past and we see this every year in America with the flu.

After 10,000,000 people are sick you are going to be looking at a new disease that could rival the amount of people who get sick each year from the flu. This will be particularly true if we have not created a cure to this illness and if its highly communicable. 

Beyond that number, the question arises: When do we reach a point when essentials services become affected by the amount of people who are ill and dying? 

  • Trash Collection
  • Water Treatment
  • Electricity
  • Gas and Heat
  • Police and Fire

Just these few essential services will have a detrimental impact on society. Before long we will be facing not only the sickness but also the desperate people who are looking for food, clean water, medicine for their kids and any other number of items that might be necessary for a person to sustain themselves and their families. 

15 Must Have Home Quarantine Preps

While you should be prepping to survive a collapse you are also going to need to isolate your preps to handle a number of situations that could occur in your area or in your home during an outbreak. One of the most important is a home quarantine kit. This kit will allow you to handle sickness in general not just the outbreak of a dangerous pandemic. 

Even during a bad flu season you will want to isolate those who are ill from those who are not. Particularly if you have young kids or elderly in the home. 

Here are the items you will need to build a quarantine kit that will keep people outside the sick room safe and the people inside the room recovering. 

  1. Protective Body Suits (here)
  2. N95 Masks (or more) (here)
  3. Thick Plastic Sheeting (common at home improvement stores)
  4. Simple cot for laying down and sleeping
  5. Essential Oils (10 oils for colds and flu)
  6. Strong High Mil Trash Bags 
  7. Hydration and Electrolyte Options (sports drinks or others)
  8. Immune Booster (store bought or something like pine needle tea) 
  9. A good amount of cleaning solution or spray that disinfects
  10. High quality soap and scrubbing tools (see these surgical scrub brushes)
  11. Disposable latex gloves
  12. Duck tape or painters tape depending on where you set up your quarantine room
  13. 5 gallon bucket to act as a back up toilet (multiple would be preferred)
  14. Bleach to disinfect buckets between uses
  15. Water, water, water - in this case, at least 2 gallons of water per person for up to 7 days if possible (always have a quality backup water source like this)

Setting Up a Quarantine

There are tons of things that you can do ahead of time when you are planning for setting up a quarantine. One of the most important parts is to designate a room for the quarantine. If the room can have a bathroom or is a bathroom that would be best. It’s a much better area to quarantine someone. Particularly if they are going to be vomiting or having diarrhea - yuck. 

Keeping the germs in the quarantine room is the whole point of that room. Using your masks, body suits will be important. Good personal hygiene will be just as important. Showering or bathing with soap when you leave the room will be crucial. 

Your plastic sheeting will be used to block airflow from the quarantine area. This will be very important if you plan on keeping those who aren’t sick from becoming so. The sheeting will also act as a border that only those dressed properly can enter. Hang the sheeting from the top of the door and be sure you have plenty excess on all sides of the doorway and floor. This stuff is cheap, and you should stock up on it. 

Your strong trash bags are also going to be very important for dealing with waste. If the water system is compromised and the toilets are back up dealing with infected bodily fluids is going to take some serious effort. It will also take lots of powerful trash bags. These have to stand up! 

Be Prepared ahead of time for Pandemics!

Its no fun to consider the possibility of a global pandemic, but its necessary. In the early days of a serious outbreak there may be lots of help and you might even be able to find a doctor. If so, you will be lucky. What you need is to be able to survive without a doctor. You need to have the items in this quarantine kit as they will help you deal with the disease or illness. Remember, the purpose is to isolate the person who is sick and treat them to the best of your ability. 

If you are very interested in this topic you should also look into the Doomsday Book of Medicine which is a great read for doomsday medical preparedness. Also, The Survival Medicine Handbook, which is another great resource