Chicken wings, beer and ... oxygen concentrators?

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01/21/2019

So apparently, the New England Patriots won the AFC East (am I saying that right?) last night.

If my Facebook and Twitter feeds are anything to go by, it was a real heartstopper of a game, due to the myriad posts from people saying things like, “My heart just stopped,” and “My heart can’t take this anymore.”

My favorite? Karyn Estrella, of HOMES fame who is smack dab in the middle of Patriots country, who asked, “Where’s an oxygen tank when you need one?”

That’s an excellent question. My guess is, for many beneficiaries, that’s a question that will be asked very frequently if recent trends continue. The latest GAO report on supplier numbers showed a decrease of 11% for 2017. That’s on top of an 8% decrease in 2016.

It’s also in line with an AAHomecare analysis that shows a decrease of about 35% between 2010 and 2018.

The big question now is, with the industry just starting in on two years of any willing provider, will access problems worsen, less or stay about the same?

As the executive director of HOMES, Karyn presumably has an inside track on the best oxygen tank suppliers in her area, should she actually need one to watch the Superbowl.

If you are a beneficiary, or their caregiver, it might not be so easy.