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Number of Fla. nursing home deaths rises to 8
17 Setiembre 2017, 02:52 | Azura Castelo
The eye of Hurricane Irma passes through Naples Fla. Sunday Sept. 10 2017
The eight deaths at the Rehabilitation Centre at Hollywood Hills, days after Irma struck, heightened concerns about the vulnerability of the state's large elderly population amid widespread power outages.
Other patients are in critical condition.
Hollywood police later tweeted that they had evacuated 158 patients to local hospitals.
Most of the patients treated for respiratory distress, dehydration, and heat-related issues, officials said, and about 12 of the 115 patients are in the emergency room. The workers get them from a nearby hospital. Thousands of anxious residents who evacuated have been pressing to be allowed to return home.
While counties claim nursing homes fall on priority lists for power restorations, we've discovered the state does not consider nursing homes to be high priority centers like hospitals.
Irma hit the United States about two weeks after Hurricane Harvey plowed into Houston, killing about 60 and causing some $180 billion in damage, mostly from flooding.
More than 100 people were evacuated from the Rehabilitation Center, in Hollywood, on Wednesday morning where residents were suffering from intense heat and lack of power after the deadly hurricane.
Calls to the owner and other officials at the Hollywood home were not immediately returned, but the facility's administrator, Jorge Carballo, said in a statement that it was "cooperating fully with relevant authorities to investigate the circumstances that led to this unfortunate and tragic outcome". And they started asking for the help - Florida Power & Light, which is Florida's energy company.
Florida authorities scrambled throughout the hurricane-ravaged state to make sure elderly residents were safe in the wake of the deaths of eight residents inside a sweltering nursing home. However, officials said they are anxious a new crisis could emerge when homeowners find their neighborhoods have no fuel, power, running water and other basic services.
Due to the damage left by the hurricane, at least 31 people died from all three states, according to ABC News.
The Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills is not part of the Memorial Healthcare System.
The man was using a generator to power his home after severe weather knocked out electricity in the area.
He said it was "inexcusable" that no one appeared to have called 911 as residents in their 70s, 80s and 90s sweltered without air conditioning in the summer Florida heat overnight.
Police were checking on more than 40 other nursing facilities in Hollywood, Kate Stein of member station WLRN tells NPR's Newscast unit.
Families looking for information can call the hospital hotline at 954-265-1074.
"If they find that anyone wasn't acting in the best interests of their patients, we will hold them accountable to the fullest extent of the law", he said.
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At no time did the facility report that conditions had become unsafe or that the health and safety of their patients was at risk. At the time of the deaths at the Hollywood Hills nursing home, almost 150 other nursing homes were without power.