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Nursing Home Deaths Considered Homicide, Linked to Severe Negligence

Posted on February 05, 2018 in Nursing Home Abuse

Chicago nursing home neglect attorneysResidents in a nursing home are often those we should respect the most. Grandparents, great-grandparents, veterans, and other venerable elderly people live in homes like these. Unfortunately, sometimes the elders of our society are not treated justly. Because many residents of nursing homes lack the ability to communicate well, nursing home abuse and neglect often goes unreported. When evidence of abuse or neglect arises, it is critically important that it be investigated thoroughly and that guilty parties are held accountable.

Extreme Heat and Dehydration

A Florida nursing home is under severe scrutiny after a horrific series of events led to 12 residents dying. The residents who passed away did so in the days and weeks following Hurricane Irma in the fall of last year. The hurricane caused the air conditioning to go out at the facility, and residents were forced to endure dangerous heat and disgusting conditions. Many of them were simply not well enough to handle the extreme conditions and lost their lives as a result.

Although federal regulations state that temperatures should not be above 81 degrees, Florida regulators report that temperatures rose to 99 degrees in the sweltering nursing home. Some patients' body temperatures were up to 107.5 degrees. Residents were found in horrible conditions, covered in sweat and excrement. The heat was so unmanageable that four out of every five residents on particular floor suffered dehydration and other heat-related symptoms. Almost half of the residents living on another floor also suffered these heat-related symptoms.

Prosecutors say the staff of the nursing home failed to recognize the risk of the rising temperatures and violated state law by not providing relief for the baking residents. The medical examiner has ruled all 12 deaths as homicides. The nursing home denies excessive temperatures existed in the building.

This tragedy provoked Florida Governor Rick Scott to impose emergency rules requiring all nursing homes and assisted-living facilities in Florida to purchase generators in the event that they lose air conditioning during a storm or for other reasons. For some, this action is too little too late.

Contact Us for Help

At Schwartz Injury Law, we are dedicated to helping those who have been victimized by negligent nursing homes. Our team has extensive experience and vast knowledge of this area of the law and will put it to use in helping you hold negligent parties accountable for their wrongdoing. If you or a loved one has experienced nursing home neglect or abuse, call 312-535-4625 for a confidential consultation with a Chicago nursing home injury attorney today.



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