Following the deaths of 12 South Florida nursing home residents in the aftermath of hurricane Irma in 2017, emergency preparedness for seniors was to become a number one priority for all nursing homes and assisted living communities across Florida.
However, according to Florida’s Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA), nearly 60 percent of the state’s nursing homes have not installed equipment in line with a law regarding emergency preparedness for seniors that was enacted by then Governor Rick Scott in 2018 after the 12 nursing home resident deaths.
The law states that all nursing homes and assisted living communities must have back-up generators for use during power outages caused by hurricanes or other disasters. Facilities can have a generator installed on the premises or have a contract in place with a local company that delivers mobile generators. The law also requires facilities to have an approved Emergency Management Plan (EMP) in place.
According to AHCA, 58 percent of nursing homes in Florida have been given more than an additional year by state officials to meet the requirements, though the original deadline was the start of last year’s hurricane season. About 90 percent of the state’s 3,000-plus assisted living communities have installed equipment that meets the new standards. Assisted living communities had until July 1, 2018 to comply with the new law, although extensions were available until January 1, 2018. Nursing homes were subjected to similar requirements.
To operate and manage a successful senior living community, the focus must be on all aspects of quality healthcare, including the safety and well-being of the residence during emergency situations. During hurricanes or other disasters, rest assured that all facilities operated by the Visiting Nurse Management Company (VNMC) are compliant with all state and federal regulations regarding emergency preparedness for seniors. In fact, the VNMC has received letters commending its “steadfastness to the emergency generator movement” and “commitment to emergency preparedness excellence” from the Bureau of Emergency Services in several Florida counties.
The VNMC takes hurricane preparedness very seriously and works diligently to ensure the facilities we manage are secure and safe places to live. This is important for both investors and residents alike, as complying with the laws helps protect the residents, as well as the invested interests of all parties involved.
The Visiting Nurse Management Company can help your new or existing senior living community operate successfully and profitably.
Call 866-325-1772 for a FREE CONSULTATION today.