After a dozen residents at a Hollywood nursing home slowly sweltered to death after Hurricane Irma knocked out power and their air conditioning, Florida officials vowed to take steps to prevent it from happening again.
The Legislature followed up by passing rules requiring backup power for cooling for at least 96 hours at all of the state's 685 nursing homes and 3,101 assisted living facilities. The new rules went into effect Friday, the first day of hurricane season, according to the Tampa Bay Times.
But only 48 nursing homes and 91 ALFs have reported they have installed equipment and had state site inspections as of May 25, according to the most recent data available by the Agency of Health Care Administration, which is in charge of tracking and enforcing the new rule.
Hundreds of facilities — 348 nursing homes and 343 assisted living facilities — have requested extensions to give them more time to install equipment and have it inspected to meet the requirements set by the rules.
But the 567 facilities whose requests for extensions have been approved, while technically in "compliance," have up to Jan. 1, 2019, to meet the actual requirements of the rule, meaning many facilities may not have the mandated backup power for cooling for this hurricane season.
Read the full story at the Tampa Bay Times.