The Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills is being investigated after eight of the residents of the nursing home died.
The power went out due to Hurricane Irma and the heat was so unbearable the fragile elderly people were baking inside. The home staff sent the worst to the hospital across the street as they struggled to find solutions for air conditioners. They had portable A/C units and fans, but the heat and humidity was too much.
But according to CBS4 Miami reporter Jim DeFede, the center desperately kept calling Florida Gov. Rick Scott begging for help. In fact, they called a full 36 hours prior to the the first death. The reason they were calling Scott was they were told to call a special cell phone that Scott gave out to healthcare executives saying they should call if there are any problems. So, they did exactly that, and no one came to the rescue.
1/2 BREAKING: @CBSMiami has learned that in the 36 hours before the first death at the Hollywood nursing home @FLGovScott was called...— Jim DeFede (@Jim DeFede)1505506749.0
2/2 ...three times by nursing home officials saying they needed "immediate assistance."— Jim DeFede (@Jim DeFede)1505506808.0
Nursing home called a special cell phone number @FLGovScott gave out to healthcare execs that they should call with any problems @CBSMiami— Jim DeFede (@Jim DeFede)1505506928.0
But, Scott's office refused to accept any culpability in the incident.
"The tragic and senseless loss at Hollywood Hills Rehabilitation Center is the subject of a criminal homicide investigation by law enforcement," a statement from Scott's office explained. "Let's be clear -- this facility is located across the street from one of Florida's largest hospitals, which never lost power and had fully operating facilities. It is 100 percent the responsibility of health care professionals to preserve life by acting in the best interest of the health and well-being of their patients."
There are still 56 nursing homes across Florida that are still without power, according to CBS4.