Rapid City nurse helps with Irma; more supplies needed

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The state of Florida is beginning to clean up after Hurricane Irma.

The majority of the damage is to the Florida Keys, with FEMA saying 25 percent of homes in the islands are destroyed.

A Rapid City Regional Hospital registered nurse, Eryn O’Connell, headed down to Florida for two weeks to help with the cleanup effort. She is currently located at a shelter serving 800 people in Ruskin, Fla., near Tampa. O’Connell said that many of the clients are still without power and electricity, and volunteers are doing the best they can with the resources available.

"You have clients who come in who forget their oxygen at home,” O’Connell said. “You don't have any other resources. Once we're on lockdown phase we're not allowed to leave. EMS isn't on the floor, there's not any deputies, there's not a police department patrolling around - anything like that. So you really just have to make do with the best you can. We had multiple different people forgetting their medications, you have lacerations coming in, you have wound care bandage changes - that type of thing. Not as many resources as you'd like - that you're used to."

Shelters will remain open until they’re no longer needed.

To donate to hurricane relief through the Red Cross, CLICK HERE.


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