“That is the real travesty of this PG&E plan,” said Sandy Jay, a nurse practitioner at Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital in Sonoma County, about 130 miles southwest of Auburn. “As the dominoes fall, it’s the poor and the disabled who are the most affected by this.”
Jay supervises a program that for 20 years has sent teams of workers throughout the Santa Rosa area to bring medicine and treatment to those whose conditions prevent them from leaving home or keep them bedbound.
Without power, though, almost all of those patients need help immediately, she said. Air-pumped mattresses, used to prevent chronic bedsores, begin to deflate. Ventilators and nebulizers cease to function. Electric wheelchairs don’t respond. And many of the affected people are reachable only by landline telephones, which don’t work in a shut-off.
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