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PEC program warns members on life-sustaining devices of planned outages

PEC program helps protect members on life-sustaining medical devices

Pedernales Electric Cooperative customers dependent on CPAP machines, like this one, and other home medical devices can join the utility’s Medical Necessity Program to give them advance notice of planned power outages.

Pedernales Electric Cooperative members dependent on home medical devices can join the utility’s Medical Necessity Program. Rolling blackouts caused by winter storm Uri in February illustrated the need for more people to sign up for the program, which is PEC’s version of a critical care registry of residential homes. The Medical Necessity Program launched June 1, 2017. 

“Eligible members enrolled in the program are given priority consideration to receive advance notification of planned outages in their area so they may make necessary arrangements,” said PEC Executive Vice President of Public Affairs Mike Viesca in a statement. 

To enroll in the program, customers must download and complete one part of the application then ask their doctor to fill out the second part.

Once both portions are completed, PEC customers can:

  • drop off the application at a PEC office 
  • fax it to the attention of Medical Necessity Program at 830-868-5097  
  • email it to medical@peci.com as an attachment
  • mail it to Pedernales Electric Cooperative Inc., attention Medical Necessity Program, P.O. Box 1, Johnson City, TX 78636

While the program lets PEC workers know which customers have life-sustaining electrical equipment at their homes, it does not guarantee those homes won’t ever be without electricity, Viesca said. 

“Service interruptions are often beyond our control,” he said. “Therefore, anyone who relies on uninterrupted power for a medical need should make arrangements for on-site backup capabilities or other alternatives in the event of power loss.”

jfierro@thepicayune.com

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