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 Posted by John Jacob, a health communications writer and editor at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health

By now most of us have heard about the major snowstorm headed our way Friday and into Saturday. Now's the time to get prepared. Here are some specific tips for people who receive home health or personal care services, and the people and organizations that provide those services.

If you receive regular services such as home health, personal care, or transportation services, work with these providers before the storm arrives to make sure you are prepared in case they can't reach you for up to 72 hours.

If you have medical appointments scheduled during the next 72 hours, plan now for what you'll do if you cannot make those appointments. If you need it, make sure you have enough medication, including supplemental oxygen, on hand for at least 72 hours.

Check to make sure that batteries and back-up batteries for medical equipment and assistive technology are fully charged.

If you do have to leave your home, bring medications, medical equipment, and any other support devices with you.

If you provide home-based services such as home health, oxygen, personal care, transportation, or Meals on Wheels, work with your clients to ensure they have enough medication or other supplies in case power goes out or snow prohibits travel for a period of time.

Stay informed on the latest storm developments at www.mass.gov/mema.

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health communication writer and editor

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