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Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center - Houston, Texas

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Hurricane Ike Daily Update: Tuesday, September 16, 2008, 3 p.m.

September 17, 2008

  1. The offer for free gas by the Texas Medical Center was only for Monday, September 15, 2008.  This offer has now expired.  We will let you know if another opportunity presents itself.
  2. If you have gas and can offer a ride to a fellow employee or you do not have gas and need a ride to get to work, please contact Ray Glover, Transportation Coordinator at 713-791-1414 ext. 4722 or email  The plan is to match up co-workers who live near each other and pull together during this difficult time.
  3. The MEDVAMC has arranged with Diamond A-CAT-A-ME for free child care for employees on scheduled tour of duty.  If you have signed up for this and have made other arrangements for child care or will not use your slot, please contact the EOC at ext. 7298 ASAP. This child care center is on Almeda across from the VA Complex and has all necessary licenses and background checks in place.  Diapers, formula, medicines, and extra clothes must be provided by the parents. This benefit is being provided to employees with no other options. Contact your supervisor for more information.
  4. The Employee Assistance Program (EAP) is providing emotional support groups for employees affected by Hurricane Ike:  Wednesday, 9/17/08 -7:30-8:30 a.m., Room 3B-115; 12-1 p.m., Dental Conference Room 2A-312 and 3:30-4:30 p.m., Dental Conference Room 2A-312. Thursday, 9/18/08 - 7:30-8:30 a.m., Room 4C-122; 11 a.m.-12 p.m., Room 4C-122; and 3 - 4:30 p.m., Room 4C-122.  Additional dates and times have been broadcast.
  5. If your work area has experienced water intrusion (due to the storm) and the carpet is wet, contact EMS at ext. 7488.
  6. An Employee Support Unit (ESU) has been established to provide general resource information to employees affected by Hurricane Ike.  The ESU will operate from 8 a.m. -4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, until further notice.  Employees wishing to contact the ESU may do so by calling 713-794-7754 or 713-794-7755 or by visiting Room 2C-341.
  7. A prayer service will be held on Wednesday, noon, in the Chapel located on the 2nd Floor, for all those affected by Hurricane Ike.  All employees, veterans and visitors are invited to attend.
  8. The Canteen has received some basic supplies from fellow Canteen units in Texas that individuals may be looking for or in need of.  These include: paper towels, toilet tissue, personal hygiene items, toothbrushes and toothpaste, portable fans, dish soap, hand bar soap, snack items, canned soups and meal packs.
  9. Individuals who experienced damage to their vehicle on the VA complex during the hurricane may file a report with the VA Police.
  10. The outpatient clinics in Galveston, Texas City, Conroe, and Beaumont are closed today.  Assessments of these clinics are currently being made and information will be provided when a determination is made on their reopening.
  11. If you have staffing issues and need people to answer phones, greet patients, etc., call the Labor Pool at ext. 7598 and let them know your manpower needs.  Staff who have youth (minimum age 13) that would like to volunteer, contact the Volunteer Office at ext. 7135.
  12. Evacuated veterans with urgent care needs requiring continuing care may contact any VA facility by dialing 1-800-507-4571.  This phone number may also be used by families and friends requiring information about patients from those VA facilities affected by natural and man-made disasters.  Veterans may call with questions such as where to access health care, how to receive their prescription drugs, or any other concerns they may have about their care.
  13. FEMA is ready to victims of Hurricane Ike.  Applicants should call the FEMA hotline number at 1-800-621-3362 or visit *.  Three types of assistance are available: rent assistance for temporary housing; financial assistance for home repairs; and other needs assistance (i.e., medical expenses, dental expenses, personal property damage, and transportation assistance).
  14. The van pool and GSA vehicle parking lot has been moved to Lot D located behind the Engineering buildings.
  15. Both Vet Centers are closed today., September 16, 2008.
  16. If you need a Red Cross shelter, call 1-800-433-2767.
  17. For information on road conditions, visit * or call 1-800-452-9292.

Useful Web sites:

Latest Business Openings *

Hurricane recovery distribution centers *

Open Stores List *

Relief Information *

Hurricane Ike Relief And Assistance Information for Houston Area *

Latest Openings *

Incident Commander 713.794.7262
Planning 713.794.7298/7428
Operations 713.794.7371
Public Affairs 713.794.7490
Patient Information 713.794.8736
Social Work 713.794.8553
Safety 713.794.7483
Police 713.794.8406
Finance 713.794.7598
Logistics 713.794.8554
Emergency Mgr Coordinator 713.794.8994

* This link will take you outside of the Department of Veterans Affairs Web site and will open in a new window. VA does not endorse and is not responsible for the content of linked Web sites.