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Require dialysis centers to have backup generators

Assemblywoman Crystal Peoples-Stokes, a member of the New York State Health Committee, has introduced legislation to require backup generators in all kidney dialysis centers. Sen. Kemp Hannon, chairman of the Health Committee, has introduced the same bill in the State Senate.

Every legislator should support their efforts because, as Peoples-Stokes stated, this is a “no-brainer in many ways.” At present, facilities that operate without a backup generator are placing their patients in life-threatening jeopardy. When the power goes out, patients are expected to remove themselves from the machine, which most can’t do. Staff must then undertake this task. Patients are then instructed to assemble in the parking lot. Can you imagine chronically ill patients, many in wheelchairs or on gurneys, out in a blizzard or even a thunderstorm? Patients’ well-being must be a priority.

These corporations make enormous profits. They can easily afford to put in backup generators. Legislation must be passed to require backup generators in these facilities. People’s lives are at stake. Our legislators’ duty is to look out for the welfare of their constituents. If ever a bill should be fast tracked, this is the one, and our governor should sign same as soon as possible. Peoples-Stokes and Hannon should be commended for their efforts on behalf of dialysis patients.

Allen F. Scioli

Hamburg