Oxygen-dependent patient resources after the storm

TALLAHASSEE — If you are oxygen-dependent you may need to take additional steps to secure emergency oxygen tanks and equipment while recovering from Hurricane Irma, especially if power has not yet been restored to your residence. Oxygen-dependent residents should:

• Contact your oxygen supplier and request additional tanks. If you’re unable to get the oxygen needed from your local office, and you are dealing with a national provider, call their other offices and request a delivery.

• If your oxygen supply company still cannot provide additional tanks, call the medical provider who wrote the order for the oxygen. This may be your primary care provider. Request a new order to be placed with another company that can provide emergency oxygen.

• If your home is still without power, contact your utility company to make them aware of your oxygen dependency, and they may be able to add your home to a medical priority list. Also, contact family and friends who have power and are willing to assist.

• Local special needs shelters remain open in some counties and may be able to assist. The shelter should not be your primary source for oxygen and is only a temporary solution. For information on local special needs shelters, visit http://www.floridadisaster.org/disability/specialneeds/default.aspx. Bring your own concentrator and a caregiver if you normally need assistance at home.

If you are critically low on oxygen tanks and supplies, go to the hospital or call 911.

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