partlycloudy
Tuesday November 21st, 2017 10:46PM

Hurricane's strike brought special risk to the oldest

By The Associated Press

ATLANTA (AP) — Like clockwork, stories of suffering by the oldest residents in the line of hurricanes, floods, tornadoes and other natural disasters seem to follow. Regulations dictate nursing homes and other facilities must have preparation plans in place, but the realities of how older Americans cope with a storm go beyond any piece of paper. The issue burst to the forefront again Wednesday with news of six deaths at the Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills in Florida, where workers say Hurricane Irene caused the air conditioning to fail, and they struggled to keep residents cool with fans, cold towels and ice.

A look at the issues at play in keeping the oldest safe in the line of disaster:

RISKS RISE FOR MOST VULNERABLE RESIDENTS

Time and again, natural disasters have claimed residents of nursing homes and other senior communities. The risks rise in a state like Florida, which has the highest proportion of people 65 and older of any state, one in five of its residents.

Hurricane Andrew caused a diaspora of nursing home residents, and family members frantically searched to locate their elderly relatives. Hurricane Katrina was followed by harrowing tales from St. Rita's nursing home, where dozens died. And Hurricane Harvey washed through La Vita Bella assisted living facility, and brought a viral photo of elderly women sitting in deep floodwaters while they awaited rescue.

PLANS IN PLACE, BUT NOT ALWAYS THOROUGH

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which regulates nursing homes, gives the Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills a below average rating, two stars on its five-star scale. But the most recent state inspection reports showed no deficiencies in the area of emergency plans.

Both federal and state laws require emergency plans for nursing homes and training for staff. A 2012 report from the inspector general of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services found the vast majority of nursing homes comply with that requirement, but that serious gaps persisted.

The plans often included unreliable transportation contracts and little collaboration with local emergency managers, the audit found.

The Rehabilitation Center's emergency plan was not immediately released by the state.

DANGEROUS EVEN OUTSIDE STORM'S PATH

Even though threats can be grave to seniors staying in facilities in the path of a storm, evacuations also can be deadly. When tornadoes ripped across Alabama in 2011, they flattened an assisted-living center, tore through a brand-new senior housing complex and ripped apart a nursing home, where four dozen residents massed in hallways, praying as trees crashed down and a cloud of dust rained upon them.

Some died in the tornado itself. Others, thrust into difficult moves to unfamiliar new homes, died in the days that followed.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Health, AP Business, AP Online - Georgia News, AP Online Headlines - Georgia News, AP Health - Senior Health, AP Business - Industries, AP Business - Health Care
© Copyright 2017 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
As Rohingya flee violence, Myanmar's Suu Kyi skips UN meet
As Rohingya flee violence, Myanmar government says leader Aung San Suu Kyi will skip this month's U.N. General Assembly.
12:31PM ( 6 minutes ago )
Josh Duggar welcomes baby amid battle over fondling claims
Reality TV star Josh Duggar has announced the birth of a baby boy a day after a judge halted his lawsuit over the release of information related to allegations he fondled his sisters as a child
12:29PM ( 8 minutes ago )
Son: Pete Domenici, former GOP senator, has died
Pete Domenici, a former Republican senator from New Mexico who became a power broker known for his work on the federal budget and energy policy, has died
12:20PM ( 17 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Study prompts call to examine flu vaccine and miscarriage
A puzzling study of U.S. pregnancies suggests that women who received yearly vaccinations against swine flu between 2010 and 2012 had more miscarriages than others
4:05AM ( 8 hours ago )
Age matters when it comes to screening for cervical cancer
Getting checked for cervical cancer isn't one-size-fits-all, as draft guidelines offer women 30 and older a choice of testing
1:35PM ( 23 hours ago )
Study shows hormone pills don't shorten older women's lives
The longest follow-up study yet on menopausal hormone pills suggests they don't shorten older women's lives
11:39AM ( 1 day ago )
AP Health
Police arrest CEO of world's largest meatpacker
Police have arrested the CEO of the world's largest meatpacker on suspicion of manipulating financial markets
11:58AM ( 39 minutes ago )
The Latest: 6th person dies at Florida nursing home
City officials say a sixth patient from a Florida nursing home has died in aftermath of Hurricane Irma
11:56AM ( 41 minutes ago )
The Latest: Graham introduces last-gasp health overhaul bill
Four Republican senators are introducing a long-shot attempt to roll back much of former President Barack Obama's health insurance law
11:54AM ( 43 minutes ago )
AP Business
Collapsed interstate bridge in Georgia reopens to traffic
A key section of interstate highway through Atlanta has partially reopened, six weeks after a highway bridge collapsed because of a large fire.
7:41PM ( 4 months ago )
Cagle promises 500,000 new jobs in Georgia governor campaign
Casey Cagle will launch his campaign for governor on Sunday with a pledge to add half a million new jobs in Georgia in four years if voters choose him to replace term-limited Gov. Nathan Deal.
12:11PM ( 4 months ago )
Senate confirms Sonny Perdue as agriculture secretary
The Senate on Monday confirmed former Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue to be agriculture secretary in President Donald Trump's administration as the farming industry looks to Washington for help amid a downturn in the market.
8:55PM ( 4 months ago )
AP Online - Georgia News
Senate committee approves 'campus carry' bill with changes
Licensed gun owners could carry concealed handguns on public college campuses under legislation backed by a Senate committee
8:50PM ( 5 months ago )
Debate over religious freedom returns to Georgia legislature
Georgia Republicans have again proposed legislation they argue will protect people acting on religious belief, undaunted by Gov. Nathan Deal's veto of a proposal last year.
7:42PM ( 6 months ago )
Authorities: Suspect in 3 slayings dead after motel standoff in west Georgia
A man suspected in the killings of two women in Florida and one in Alabama died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound after a standoff Tuesday at a Georgia motel in which a female suspect was arrested, authorities said.
7:56PM ( 7 months ago )
AP Online Headlines - Georgia News
Danish queen's husband Henrik is suffering from dementia
Denmark royal household says the husband of Denmark's Queen Margrethe who last month caused a stir by saying is he won't be buried next to the monarch in a specially designed sarcophagus, says he is suffering from dementia
9:23AM ( 1 week ago )
'Need help': Harvey victims use social media when 911 fails
Desperate Harvey victims are using social media to share maps of their locations and images of themselves trapped on rooftops and inside buildings
7:11PM ( 2 weeks ago )
AP-NORC poll: Hispanics see barriers to nursing care
AP-NORC poll: Few older Hispanics are confident that nursing homes and assisted living facilities can meet their needs.
9:33PM ( 3 weeks ago )
AP Health - Senior Health
Sanders bill expands Medicare for all, lacks details on cost
A bill by Sen. Bernie Sanders would let Americans get health coverage simply by showing a new government-issued card
10:47AM ( 1 hour ago )
French president vows help for Irma's damage in Caribbean
France's president is promising to rebuild stronger Caribbean territories amid anger over his response to Hurricane Irma. In a news conference Tuesday, he promised to evacuate those who want to leave and provide services and shelter to those who stay.
10:37AM ( 2 hours ago )
The Latest: Mayor: 5 dead from nursing home that lost power
Broward County Mayor Barbara Sharief says five people have died from a Florida nursing home that had lost power after Hurricane Irma roared through the state
9:51AM ( 2 hours ago )
AP Business - Industries
Judge to hear arguments on whether to lock up Pharma Bro
A federal judge in New York is considering whether the provocative online antics of former pharmaceuticals company CEO Martin Shkreli are bad enough to put him behind bars
12:56AM ( 11 hours ago )
Appalachian poor, left out of health debate, seek free care
The sick and poor in Appalachia are flocking to free health clinics
7:39AM ( 1 day ago )
Drugmaker Lilly to trim workforce by nearly 9 percent
Eli Lilly will slash its global workforce by nearly 9 percent as the drugmaker closes some research sites and pushes to cut fixed costs
10:31AM ( 6 days ago )
AP Business - Health Care
As Rohingya flee violence, Myanmar's Suu Kyi skips UN meet
As Rohingya flee violence, Myanmar government says leader Aung San Suu Kyi will skip this month's U.N. General Assembly.
12:31PM ( 7 minutes ago )
Josh Duggar welcomes baby amid battle over fondling claims
Reality TV star Josh Duggar has announced the birth of a baby boy a day after a judge halted his lawsuit over the release of information related to allegations he fondled his sisters as a child
12:29PM ( 8 minutes ago )
Son: Pete Domenici, former GOP senator, has died
Pete Domenici, a former Republican senator from New Mexico who became a power broker known for his work on the federal budget and energy policy, has died
12:20PM ( 18 minutes ago )
The Latest: Water service slowly returning to Florida Keys
Monroe County officials say water service is slowly being restored to the Florida Keys
12:20PM ( 18 minutes ago )
Edith Windsor remembered as 'great' pioneer for gay rights
A gay rights pioneer is being remembered for bringing a landmark U.S. Supreme Court case that struck down parts of a federal law banning same-sex marriage
12:17PM ( 20 minutes ago )