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Special Needs Shelter Information

Florida Department of Health in Osceola County

Hurricane Season - 2023

As another hurricane season is upon us, please see CDC’s “Be Safe After a Hurricane” webpage (, which has been translated into 11 different languages.  This website is available in Arabic, Farsi, French, Swahili, Vietnamese, Chinese, Chinese Simplified, Dari, Haitian Creole, Pashto, and Tigrinya.

Get Prepared. Be a Survivor!

A disaster can strike at any time - sometimes without warning. It is important for every Floridian, especially citizens with physical challenges and other special needs, to plan ahead for an emergency situation and know what to do in the event of an emergency.

This page offers resources and information specifically tailored for people with disabilities/special needs and their families to help prepare for emergencies, protect themselves, and be survivors. The links below provide additional information on preparedness planning, evacuation, and shelters.

Don't put off until tomorrow what you can plan for today! 


The basic eligibility criteria you would need to meet to stay in a special needs shelter:

1) You are a person with special medical needs

2) Your care exceeds the basic first aid provided at general population shelters

3) Your impairments or disabilities are medically stable and do not exceed the capacity, staffing and equipment of the special needs shelter to minimize deterioration of your pre-event level of health.

Remember — just because you have a disability does NOT mean you will require a Special Needs Shelter. Some people with disabilities can be safely accommodated in a general population shelter. And the best places to shelter for every Floridian are:

1) with friends or family

2) in a safe structure

3) outside of the evacuation area.

Additional Information

  • Special Needs Shelters are for clients and their designated care giver only.  Accommodations for the rest of your household will likely need to be in a general population shelter.
  • Application DOES NOT automatically guarantee assignment. Medical staff at the shelter will make the final decision based on current needs.
  • Clients must provide their own medication, medical equipment and at least 24 hours of oxygen. Current medical information will be required.
  • Pets are not allowed in a special needs shelter. If you are unable to make private arrangements for your pets, let us know. Transportation will be provided to take them to a pet shelter. Please have your animal's medical records available.

Get a PLAN!

Please return your Special Needs Registration Form To:
Osceola County Emergency Management
Attention:  Special Needs Registration
2586 Partin Settlement Road
Kissimmee, Florida 34744
Fax: 407-742-9022

Questions? Call us at: 407-742-9001