Loved ones speak out following Hollywood nursing home deaths


Hollywood authorities say an issue with an air-conditioning unit at The Rehabilitation Center nursing home led to the evacuation of 115 people and the deaths of eight residents.

The Hollywood Hills nursing home where six elderly people died Wednesday morning is a facility with a history of poor inspections and is owned by a South Miami hospital with an troubled past of its own.

The nursing home deaths were reported Wednesday in Hollywood three days after Irma made landfall in the Florida Keys and left millions statewide without power.

Hamilton from Jon Hamilton reported that, "The suspicion is that these deaths should not have occurred".

The overall death toll from Irma climbed to 81 on Wednesday, with several hard-hit Caribbean islands accounting for more than half the fatalities, and officials continued to assess damage inflicted by the second major hurricane to strike the US mainland this year.

About 150 of the Florida's almost 700 nursing facilities were without electricity as of Wednesday morning, according to the Florida Health Care Association, which represents a lot of them.

Police said they have opened an investigation into possible criminal negligence.

More than 14,000 out 16,000-plus customers were without power in the Lower Keys on Saturday afternoon, according to Keys Energy Services, which provides service from Big Pine Key to Key West. Florida Power & Light serves less than 100 customers in the Keys, reporting only 10 there remain without power.

City officials say three people were already dead inside, and others were pronounced dead later.

Florida officials have made restoring lost power a priority and tens of thousands of utility company workers are engaged in the huge effort, many from out of state.

Trump also praised Florida's Republican Gov. Rick Scott, who supported his presidential campaign, and said Scott should run for the Senate when his second gubernatorial term ends in 2019. Sharief said there are no details about the cause of the deaths. Police are going to the 42 other assisted living facilities in the area to check on those other residents. "We believe at this time they may be related to the loss of power in the storm".

When asked why the patients hadn't been taken across the street to Memorial Regional hospital when temperatures became risky, Hollywood city spokeswoman Rayelin Storey said, "We can't get inside the heads of the staff and the administrators of this facility".

Across the street from the stifling nursing home sat a fully air-conditioned hospital, Memorial Regional.

Emergency services evacuate the nursing home in Broward County.

Almost half of Florida was engulfed by Irma, which left flooded streets, damaged homes and displaced residents in its wake.

Among the state's almost 700 nursing facilities, about 150 lacked power as of Wednesday morning, said the Florida Health Care Association, which represents most of the homes.

In a statement to local media, Jorge Carballo, administrator at The Rehabilitation Center, said "several patients experienced distress and there were [three] fatalities" in the building following the power outage, which affected the transformer that powers the facility's air conditioning system.