Visiting Florida, Trump Praises 'Incredible' First Responders, State Officials

17 September, 2017, 01:39 | Author: Valerie Burke
  • Touring Irma's Damage in the Lower Keys

It has also led to almost 150 patients being taken to local hospitals.

Craig, whose mother was sickened at the nursing home, said the centre's administrators should "be prosecuted to the full extent that the law allows and then some".

Florida lawmakers will consider significant changes to nursing home regulations in the state following the deaths of eight residents in Irma's aftermath. The building has been sealed off while police investigate.

In Hollywood, the Rehabilitation Center said the hurricane had knocked out a transformer that powered the air conditioning.

There are now no patients at the center.

The loss of life at the nursing home in Hollywood, Florida, brought the overall death toll from Irma to 81, with several hard-hit Caribbean islands including Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Island, accounting for more than half the fatalities.

Key details of the Hollywood Hills incident remain unknown, even after officials delivered an update Thursday morning.

Florida Sen. Bill Nelson called the six deaths in Hollywood "an inexcusable tragedy" and demanded a federal investigation.

In Coral Gables, an apartment building was evacuated after authorities said its lack of power made it unsafe for elderly tenants. Many communities are still cleaning up or without power or air conditioning.

Officials are still figuring out what happened when and said they do not want to speculate or prematurely release incorrect information.

That company owns The Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills, which had eight patients pronounced dead Wednesday.

"There are a number of critical patients", Story said. "Generally, we are treating dehydration, heat exhaustion and severe respiratory conditions, and we do have some critical patients". One resident died at the facility Tuesday but, because the patient had a do-not-resuscitate order, was sent to a funeral home before police asked for the body, according to police.

The medical examiner has not yet ruled any of the deaths were caused by the conditions inside the facility - a determination that would be crucial to any decision about whether anyone would be charged in connection with any deaths.

"The suspicion is that these deaths should not have occurred", NPR's Jon Hamilton reported from the scene Wednesday.

The recording shows the facility had power but workers were using an industrial-size drum fan sitting in front of two closed doors to move air through a hallway. The power generator was working, and the staff stocked up on seven days' worth of food and water.

Detailing the problems identified this week by the Agency for Health Care Administration, member station WLRN reports, "In its complaint, the healthcare agency said that on September 10 the rehab center 'became aware that its air conditioning equipment had ceased to operate effectively.'".

The air conditioning came back on around 2 p.m. Wednesday, when the only people left at the facility were detectives.

Reached by phone on Thursday, Rosemary Cooper, a licensed practical nurse at the rehabilitation center, declined to discuss specifics about the case, citing the investigation. He is also the president of Larkin Community Hospital, which has campuses in South Miami and Hialeah. Federal prosecutors said that Michel received kickbacks as part of the deal and that some of the patients came from assisted living facilities that he owned. In 2006, he and three co-defendants paid $15.4 million to settle Medicare and Medicaid fraud claims against them without admitting wrongdoing. Another 18 are being evacuated from Larkin's behavioral health services facility Wednesday. "But the United States Coast Guard, FEMA, working along with Gov. (Rick) Scott, they've really done an incredible job", adding that "power is being turned on rapidly", he said.

Natasha Anderson, an executive at the rehab center, told the Washington Post that on Monday afternoon she made the first of three calls to a private telephone help line set up by Florida Gov. Rick Scott.

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