Miami Herald: Many Florida Nursing Homes Failing to Protect Residents From COVID-19
The Florida Department of Health reports that 545,040 COVID-19 cases have been confirmed in the state as of August 12th. The respiratory disease poses an extreme, potentially life-threatening risk to Florida’s most vulnerable residents, especially those who live in nursing homes and long-term care facilities.
According to a disturbing report from the Miami Herald, many nursing homes in Florida are raking in federal relief money while failing to properly protect their most vulnerable residents from the risks posed by the COVID-19 virus. Here, our Miami nursing home abuse lawyers highlight the allegations raised in the Miami Herald’s report.
Several Nursing Homes on Florida’s “Watchlist” are Performing Poorly
The Miami Herald’s investigation is focused on a businessman named Eliezer Scheiner who has an ownership stake in at least 24 nursing homes in Florida. According to the report, these facilities have received a considerable amount of federal funding.
Nonetheless, many of them are failing to provide reliable, high-quality care to vulnerable residents. In fact, eight facilities owned by Mr. Scheiner and his companies are on Florida’s official ‘watchlist” for problematic nursing homes. Between November of 2016 and November of 2019, there were 114 complaints filed against his nursing homes and they were fined more than $500,000 by the federal government and the State of Florida.
The COVID-19 pandemic has put a harsh spotlight on Florida’s worst performing nursing homes. The Miami Herald’s analysis found that more than 100 nursing home residents have died from the virus at facilities connected to Mr. Scheiner. For reference, the investigators’ comprehensive review of state records found that the loss of life at this network of nursing homes is among the highest in Florida.
Family Members Complain About Unacceptable Conditions at Nursing Homes
In its reporting the Miami Herald spoke with many people who lost family members to COVID-19 in Florida nursing homes. They paint a bleak and alarming picture of the lack of proper safety precautions at the facilities. Even after several months, too many nursing homes are not putting the proper protocols in place.
As an example, the North Lake Care Center failed to require residents to self isolate after leaving the facility for outside treatment. A 44-year-old woman with cerebral palsy contracted COVID-19 in the facility and passed away from the respiratory disease.
With the COVID-19 outbreak continuing to affect communities across the state, it is clear that nursing homes and long term care centers need to do more to protect their most vulnerable residents.
Contact Our Miami, FL Nursing Home Neglect Lawyers for Immediate Help
At Pike & Lustig, LLP, our Florida nursing home neglect attorneys are compassionate, experienced advocates for clients. We know how to hold negligent nursing homes accountable. If you have questions about your rights or your options, we are available to help. Call us now for a no cost, completely confidential initial consultation. We serve communities throughout South Florida from our offices in Miami and West Palm Beach.