ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – The city of Albuquerque honored A&R Medical Supply for the December One Albuquerque Award for providing supplemental oxygen to COVID-19 patients. Patients who no longer required constant medical attention but were not yet healthy enough to go home were put up in local hotels with medical equipment from A&R.
The One Albuquerque Award is given to community members who have performed outstanding service in their job or community. During the virtual award ceremony, Mayor Tim Keller said the company stepped up to help the community during the pandemic. “This actually is one of those critical points in a whole continuum of COVID challenges where A&R really stepped up to help and we very much appreciated it,” Keller said.
Dolores Centeno has been with the company for eight years. Normally she’s the account executive manager, but since COVID-19 hit, she serves as the intermediary between doctors and A&R drivers who provide the equipment. “I can get calls between 12 in the morning, 2 a.m., 3 a.m. I always answer my phone. I’m sure someone would’ve done the same for me so I’m going to do what I can for New Mexico and our providers,” Centeno said.
Centeno said providers would call her about a patient and the patient would be set up in a room while they would provide the necessary equipment for their recovery before going home. “It’s a hospital base is what it was,” Centeno said. “So people were able to kind of have the comfort of home while still receiving that care.”
She said if people want to find a way to help, she encourages them to simply take the precautions that have been set in place by the state. “Two weeks ago, we were pushing probably 20 to 30 oxygen (tanks) a day. Now it’s more like 10 to 15 so we’re decreasing and it means people are listening,” Centeno said. “If people continue to follow government order, I think we all as a whole can work to not overwhelm the hospitals.”