February 24 2018

6th person dies at Florida nursing home

February 24 2018, 05:45 | Van Peters

6th person dies at Florida nursing home

6 dead in Florida nursing home Irma left without air conditioning

Almost 2.7 million homes and businesses, about 1 in 4 Florida customers, were still without power Thursday.

Several other nursing homes were evacuated because of a lack of power or air conditioning, and workers scrambled to keep patients cool with emergency stocks of ice and Popsicles.

Authorities are investigating the deaths early Wednesday of eight residents of The Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills, which said it lost a transformer that powered its air-conditioning system. Yesterday afternoon, the facility reported to the AHCA that they had power and access to fans and spot coolers provided by Memorial Healthcare. And, criminal charges should follow should investigations nail down what looks for all the world like willful negligence. It may have all been due to extreme temperatures at the facility, though the causes of death haven't yet been officially determined.

With temperatures soaring inside the ill-fated home this week, three people in their seventies, two in their eighties and three in their nineties apparently suffered at length before dying, some of them after being transported - too late - to the nearby hospital.

He did not answer questions regarding whether a generator was running inside the place.

The physician listed in state records as the nursing home's manager, Dr. Jack Michel, was accused by state and federal regulators in 2004 of defrauding Medicare and Medicaid.

Dan Eckler, 46, sat next to his luggage at Fort Lauderdale Hollywood International airport Tuesday waiting for a ride after scoring one of the few flights as the airport reopened for the first time after Hurricane Irma. Eli Pina's 96-year-old mother lives in the facility.

"It was hot in there", she told CNN, adding that her friend "couldn't hardly talk".

6 dead in Florida nursing home Irma left without air conditioning
6th person dies at Florida nursing home

The Florida Department of Transportation says it now appears that I-75 will remain open in North Florida. "(Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills) called this number on three different occasions, they would get a call back from someone at the Emergency Operation Center who would say, 'Okay, we've heard you concern, we're on it, we'll take care of it, ' but nothing happened".

Orange County Sheriff's Office spokesman Jeff Williams told The Associated Press a deputy responded to the the home following a 911 call from what sounded like a juvenile. Police used city trolleys to transport residents of Krystal Bay Nursing and Rehabilitation Center to another facility, a spokesman said.

The owner of the nursing home also is an officer of Larkin Community Hospital, a medical center with a troubled history.

Hollywood police have begun a criminal investigation into the deaths at the Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills, while the Agency for Health Care Administration and Department of Children & Families have begun their own investigations. Detectives were at the nursing home Wednesday continuing the investigation. Almost half of Florida was engulfed by Irma, which left flooded streets, damaged homes and displaced residents in its wake.

Post-hurricane storm surge in the Florida Keys was limited and it remains unclear if two reported deaths there were storm-related.

"We're talking to all of our nursing homes", Scott said.

"There's nearly a feeling that we're starting to get some success here, but we have to remember we haven't opened the gates yet for the 90% of homeowners that live here", Monroe County emergency management director Marty Senterfitt told reporters.

Though the number of people with electricity has improved from earlier in the week, some 4.9 million people across the peninsula continued to wait for power. Utility officials warned it could take 10 days or more for power to be fully restored. He toured a Houston shelter housing hundreds of displaced people and walking streets lined with soggy, discarded possessions.

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