60 Percent of Florida’s Nursing Home Are Still Out of Compliance with Legal Requirements That Prevent Deaths
Nearly one-quarter of Florida’s entire population is over the age of 60, and many of them are currently living in nursing home facilities. However, according to the latest reports, even though Florida law requires that nursing homes be prepared during the next Hurricane so that people are not injured and killed due to the power going out, nearly 60 percent of Florida’s nursing home still do not have the proper equipment that is required by law. This is of concern, given that Hurricane Dorian is at hand, placing the elderly at serious risk of injury and death.
This lack of compliance is especially shocking given that the law was passed in reaction to this same issue – lack of backup generators – leading to the deaths of 12 people in the Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills nursing home in 2017 during Hurricane Irma. In fact, as a result, 12 staffers from the facility are now being charged with manslaughter because the elderly patients were stuck in the overheated facility during the storm.
Due to Hurricane Dorian Danger, Millions Are Now at Risk & Instructed to Evacuate
While almost 300 facilities have already been fined for failing to follow the regulations, this still means that thousands of nursing homes are unable to keep the indoor temperatures from going above 81 degrees for at least 96 hours after a power outage; even though doing so only requires that they purchase generators. A majority of all facilities have been provided with more than one year to come into compliance and have still not yet implemented their plans.
As a result, as of September 2, 93 Florida nursing homes had been evacuated ahead of Hurricane Dorian, although a number of residents are reportedly also hesitant to leave, leaving more than eight million seniors living along Florida’s east coast counties in danger of Dorian. According to reports, whether or not residents are instructed to evacuate a facility has to do with the building’s ability to withstand the coming Category 5 hurricane and whether it is in the “surge zone.” Some of those that have been evacuated thus far include:
- AdventHealth (New Smyrna Beach);
- Cleveland Clinic South (Martin County);
- Good Samaritan Medical Center (Palm Beach County);
- Halifax Psychiatric Center North (Volusia County);
- Health First Cape Canaveral Hospital;
- Port St. Lucie Hospital; and
- Stuart Sebastian River Medical Center.
Contact Our Florida Nursing Home Abuse Attorneys
Too many of our loved ones receive poor care at Florida nursing home facilities. When this rises to the level of abuse, neglect, injury, and/or death, you should speak with our Jacksonville nursing home abuse attorneys at the office of Douglas & Carter, Attorneys at Law right away to find out what your options are.