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30-Day Medical Certificate

Stay Connected30-Day Medical Certificate

PUCO-regulated utility companies are prohibited from disconnecting your electric, natural gas, and water services for nonpayment under certain circumstances. If you or a permanent member of your household has a health condition that may make it especially dangerous to be without utility services, you should communicate with your doctor to reduce health risks. Planning ahead and communicating special needs are key.

30-Day Medical Certificates

A medical certificate can be used to prevent a utility disconnection or to reconnect service if the customer has been disconnected for no more than 21 days. Medical certificate forms are available upon request from the utility company, or the form can be downloaded from the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) at…; The certificate form must be signed and returned to the utility company by a licensed medical professional. The certificate is good for 30 days and a new form must be completed each time. Medical certificates can be used up to three times in a rolling 12-month period.

If the medical certificate is received prior to 3:30 p.m., service will be restored the same day. If it is received after 3:30 p.m., service will be restored at the earliest time possible the following business day. If the medical certificate is received after 3:30 p.m. on a day that precedes a non-business day, the utility shall make an effort to restore service by the end of the day.

In some cases, electric companies can give preference to prevent disconnection or establish a reconnection of utility service to individuals who rely on life support devices, such as respirators, ventilators, or other medical equipment. Since there is no guarantee that these customers will receive power immediately, a backup plan should always be in place.

The responsibility for determining whether a condition warrants a 30-day medical certificate lies exclusively with the medical professional – not the utility. There are no income guidelines associated with the use of a 30-day medical certificate. The certificate can be used for either electric, natural gas utilities, or water service. For more details, contact your utility company directly, or the PUCO Consumer Call Center hotline at 1-800-686-7826.

Payment Plans

30-day medical certificates can postpone a disconnection, but customers are still required to pay for electric, natural gas, and/or water services, even for the period the 30-day medical certificate was in effect.  If a medical certificate is used to avoid disconnection, consumers are required to enter an extended payment plan for the unpaid account balance. Income-eligible consumers may also enroll in the Percentage of Income Payment Plan (PIPP Plus). The Office of the Ohio Consumers’ Counsel recommends consumers contact the utility company as soon as possible to establish a payment plan. More information can be found at

Additional Information for Customers with Medical Needs During Power Outages

Customers with special medical needs should talk with their doctors to determine if their medical condition should be made known to the utility companies in the event of a disconnection, power outage during a storm, or another disruption of the customer’s utility service. Customers classified as medically “at-risk” can be placed on a critical customer list with their utility company. This list is used as part of an emergency management plan to identify addresses where there may be people with special medical needs. Electric utilities maintain these lists and notify customers periodically about options and responsibilities during outages.

In such cases, the electric utilities, being made aware of a customer’s confirmed medical needs, can be prioritized accordingly as part of the emergency planning effort. Being on the critical customer list does not guarantee uninterrupted service or immediate service restoration in the event of an outage, so one should always have a backup plan in place. In addition to verifying medical status with the utility, those in need should contact any of the available social service assistance organizations or the local office of the American Red Cross for help.

Contact the utility:

AES Ohio

American Electric Power

CenterPoint Energy

Cleveland Electric Illuminating

Columbia Gas of Ohio

Dominion East Ohio Gas

Duke Energy Ohio

Ohio Edison

Toledo Edison


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If you need multiple copies for an organization or group, please contact a member of our outreach team.