NEW ORLEANS — Preparing for a storm is always a chore. You have to gather water, food, and anything else you might need. For some people though, getting ready takes a lot more. 

There's a long checklist for anyone with medical or special needs ahead of a storm. 

Bridget King, a dialysis patient, invited us into her living room where there were stacks of home dialysis treatment she receives every night. 

"Seven days a week and I run for 10 hours and 40 minutes," King said. 

She uses a machine while sleeping. It requires electricity.

"You got to plan ahead so you're not in a panic," she said. 

That means with a storm coming, a power outage is one of her first thoughts.

"Hopefully the power doesn't stay out long," King said, hoping for no outages at all.

She's prepared. She has boxes of treatment she can take without a machine.

"That's for emergencies," King said. 

King is a retired nurse. She also has high blood pressure and diabetes. She keeps her insulin in her fridge. 

"I have a little Ziplock bag and put it on ice," she explained. 

By this point, planning for storms comes natural. She also has a 21 year old son with special needs. She has to plan for him too. King gets his medications ready and keeps a journal with his medical history and doctors' information

"So if something happens to me, somebody else can take care of him seeing who he needs to see," King said. 

Power outages are possible with Tropical Storm Barry. Anyone with electrically dependent medical equipment like a CPAP for sleep apnea or a home ventilator for premature children either needs to find access to a generator or ask your doctor for the best plan in case of an outage.

New Orleans Health Department offered this advice: have your medications handy, charge electric scooters, check oxygen supplies, and attend any last minute dialysis appointments in the morning.

To enroll with the city's special needs registry so they'll be informed with your needs in case of an emergency, call 311 or go to


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