Earlier this month, The Goldwater reported at a nursing home where a total of nine patients died as a result of the air conditioning being knocked out by Hurricane Irma. Now, Florida officials have suspended the license of the nursing home. The Agency for Health Care Administration announced they had suspended the Hollywood Hills Rehabilitation Center's license. The agency had already banned the facility from taking on new patients and cut their Medicaid benefits.
The nursing home tried to block these orders by filing a lawsuit. The Agency for Health Care Administration's findings show the residents of the nursing home did not receive timely medical care because the home's staff delayed calling 911. CBS Miami reports the home's staff began calling 911 on Tuesday, September 12th, more than two days after Irma hit. The nursing home claims they had called Florida Power & Light utility company 50 times as well as an emergency number issued by Florida Governor Rick Scott but did not get a response.
Eight patients in the care of the nursing home died from various causes, mostly complications related to the staggering heat after the AC went out. Some of the patients died of respiratory or cardiac distress, and at least eight were concluded to have died due to lack of receiving medical attention by the home's staff. Other patients at the home who made it to the hospital were admitted with temperatures of 109.9, 108.5 and 107. The nursing home staff insist they used coolers, fans, ice and any other available means to cool the patients.
The nursing home is now the subject of a criminal investigation and the home's attorney did not comment on the suspension.
Tips? Info? Send me a message!