In March 2017, a letter from a member captured the PEC Board of Directors’ attention.
The member is a social worker who works with medically vulnerable children in the Austin area, many of whom require electrical equipment to manage their health conditions. She urged PEC to create a critical care registry to ensure that PEC attempts early communication when a service interruption for maintenance or nonpayment is scheduled.
The board took note.
Launching June 1, our new Medical Necessity Program will create a registry of residential locations in our service territory where people rely on life-sustaining electrical equipment. When planned outages or service interruptions for nonpayment are scheduled, we’ll provide advance notice so preparations can be made.
In line with industry standards, the program does not guarantee priority electric service restoration. Members designated in the program are not exempt from planned service interruptions, nor from their financial responsibilities or from the termination of service in accordance with PEC policies.
“Our new medical necessity program is really another opportunity to facilitate communications between PEC and our members,” PEC Vice President of Member Services Eddie Dauterive said. “We will provide additional communications with them to help them prepare and have a back-up plan or system in place. If members are having trouble making payments, they can reach out to our Member Services team to discuss options and alternative arrangements.”
To qualify for the Medical Necessity Program, the location must house someone diagnosed by a physician with one of the following medical conditions:
- Chronic: Having been diagnosed by a physician as requiring an electric-powered device to prevent the impairment of major life function. To maintain chronic designation, members must reapply once a year.
- Chronic, lifelong: Same as chronic, but does not require annual application.
- Critical care: Having been diagnosed by a physician as requiring an electric-powered device to sustain life. To maintain critical care designation, members must reapply once every two years.
- Critical care, lifelong: Same as critical care, but does not require biennial application.
Members may learn more by calling 888-554-4732, visiting any PEC office or downloading an application.