For Immediate Release: June 13, 2013
LIPA Urges Customers with Special Medical Needs to Enroll in Critical Care Program
Uniondale, NY – With June marking the official start of the hurricane season, the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) wants to remind all customers who rely on electricity to power life-supporting equipment in their homes to register with LIPA’s Critical Care Program.
While the Critical Care Program does not guarantee priority restoration of service, customers enrolled in the program will receive advance notice of scheduled outages and severe weather which could lead to power outages lasting several days. However, in the event that severe weather causes a multi-day power outage, it is important for customers to understand it is their responsibility to have a plan in place that will ensure their medical needs are taken care of and they remain safe. The notifications are intended to enable customers who depend on electricity for emergency medical and life-support equipment to make advanced preparations.
“The Critical Care Program is an integral part of LIPA’s restoration and emergency preparedness plans. We encourage customers who qualify for this program to sign up well in advance of storm season,” said Joanne Schindelheim, director of marketing for LIPA. “While it is inconvenient for any of our customers to lose power, it can be a matter of life and death for those who need electricity for life sustaining medical equipment.”
Customers wishing to enroll in the Critical Care Program must provide LIPA with a medical certificate from a doctor or the local Board of Health. Once approved the customer’s account and meter will be tagged as “critical care.”
Devices which meet the medical criteria for life-support equipment include:
- Apnea Monitor
- Curraise Respirator
- Positive Pressure Respirator
- Suction Machine
- IV Feeding Machine
- Tank Type Respirator
- Hemodialysis Machine
- Rocking Bed Respirator
- Oxygen Concentrator
- IV Medical Infusion Machine
LIPA, a non-profit municipal electric provider, owns the retail electric Transmission and Distribution System on Long Island and provides electric service to more than 1.1 million customers in Nassau and Suffolk counties and the Rockaway Peninsula in Queens. LIPA is the 2nd largest municipal electric utility in the nation in terms of electric revenues, 3rd largest in terms of customers served and the 7th largest in terms of electricity delivered. In 2011, LIPA outperformed all other overhead electric utilities in New York State for frequency and duration of service interruptions. LIPA does not provide natural gas service or own any on-island generating assets. More information about LIPA can be found online at http://www.lipower.org.