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Elderly residents die from heat after hurricane

Missourians who are trying to do their best to care for their elderly, ill or infirm loved ones will often decide that it is best to place them in a nursing home. There is never a belief that nursing home abuse or neglect will occur to family members, but it does happen. Sometimes, injuries occur because of nursing home neglect; sometimes, circumstances arise and the staff and facility is ill-equipped and unable to deal with it. Regardless, when there is an injury or death at a nursing home, it is imperative to understand that there is a right to seek compensation through a legal filing.

The recent hurricane that hit Florida cut the power in a nursing home and led to the deaths of eight residents. The facility's air conditioning was not working and the people - ranging in ages from 70 to 99 - died. After the hurricane, emergency personnel were called to the home. They discovered that three of the residents had already died. One hundred and fifty were evacuated and hospitalized. Five died after they were taken from the home. It is not yet known what the specific causes of death were, but it is believed that the heat played a significant role. The facility is accused of failing to have proper contingency measures in place in the event the air conditioning broke down. The investigation is ongoing.

With a nursing home, people are unable to keep track of what happens behind closed doors 24 hours a day. All they can do is listen to their loved ones and watch for certain issues, such as unexplained bruises, sudden illness, lost property, or accusations. There are many ways in which abuse can take place in a nursing home. When this happens, family members must protect their loved ones by requesting a full investigation. Also, a lawsuit can help to garner compensation for what occurred.

Although the deaths occurred after the hurricane in Florida, these problems can happen across the nation. People who place a loved one in such a facility have the right to expect that there will be contingency plans to keep the residents safe no matter what happens. Those who believe that there has been nursing home negligence or any other form of abuse with a loved one should consider a legal filing to have a full investigation and receive compensation for the wrongs that were committed.

Source: TIME, "'This Is a Horror Story.' Outraged Families Demand Justice After 8 Die in Florida Nursing Home," Melissa Chan, Sept. 14, 2017

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