News about possible power cuts this winter and all too frequent reports of burst water mains are very worrying for people with kidney disease. So we are reprinting an article from Kidney Talk spring 2019 by GSTTKPA Committee member Nicholas Palmer, explaining how kidney patients can receive extra support from our utility companies by joining the Priority Services Register (PRS).
What is the Priority Services Register?
The PSR helps utility companies look after domestic customers who have additional communication, access or safety needs. It helps them tailor their services to support households who may need extra help and is free to join. As kidney patients managing a long-term condition – through medication, dialysis or a transplant and especially those on home dialysis – we fit that bill.
The PSR is available to domestic customers across England, Wales and Scotland only. Please note that PSR registration is not with the supplier with whom you pay your bills. You need to register with each distribution network that delivers, manages and maintains the infrastructure (you need to register with each network individually because they maintain separate registers).
How do you register?
There are a number of ways to register, including calling your providers directly and asking about Priority Services Register. You will be asked to provide your details and the reasons you qualify for the extra support at the point of registration.
What are the benefits?
- The benefits the PRS include:
- Alternative water supplies in the event of an interruption
- Alternative heating and cooking facilities in the event of the delivery of your gas being interrupted
- A dedicated number and specialist team to support you and your family during a power cut
- Keeping you safe on the doorstep with the use of passwords and identification badges
- Priority support in the event of an emergency such as a severe weather incident
You can also register for alternative communication such as large-print correspondence or bills or to send these to an alternative contact at your request.
It is also worth contacting your utilities provider to discuss the range of services that might be right for you and your family, as there is a wide range of support available.
For more information about the Priority Services Register and how to register, go to www.kidneycareuk.org/get-support/