Many nursing homes are getting evacuated starting from Thursday as Hurricane Florence approach. There are 40 nursing homes in North Carolina that are situated in the way of the hurricane. The National Hurricane Center forecast that the hurricane will bring heavy wind of up to 130 mph and a storm surge of up to 13 feet when it make landfall on the east coast from Thursday – Saturday.
Last year, 20 elderly residents were rescued from waist deep water when Hurricane Harvey hit Houston. After a week, Irma hit Florida and cause a number of deaths. Nursing facilities having access to power supplies is important as the residents’ body could rise to the point of death when no air conditioning is available.
The health care facilities had evacuated over 1,700 people on the South Carolina coast. Nursing homes in North Caroline are also evacuating. In Cumberland County, more than 100 have already evacuated the nursing homes. Kevin Carlin of Meridian Senior Living said he is concerned about the hurricane as there is a creek not far away behind.
Last year, when Harvey hit Texas, some elderly residents are left submerged. This year, many elderly have taken up shelter at the Cumberland Village Assisted Living Center. Cherie Redus of Cumberland Village Assisted Living Center said that they are depending on the generator to ensure there is continuous power.
Nursing facilities that decide not to evacuate their residents had made sure the buildings are boarded up. There are also others who say that they will make sure to follow all precautions to ensure that the residents and everyone else are safe. Holiday Retirement, a home for elderly people have 500 cots, pillows, blankets and other necessities in their backup so that they can deliver these items to other branches inland in case more residents went onboard.
Davis Community had decided to improve their emergency services as they can’t move all the patients, especially those in critical condition. Over 600 people have taken shelter at Davis Community. The campus is equipped with more than enough food, water, and the generator is ready to use.
Another facility, Lutheran Services Carolinas decided to stay open during the hurricane. The facility houses 100 residents and has 183 staff on board. Lutheran Services Carolinas has a 750 kilowatt diesel generator to provide power for up to 3 days in case there is power outage. He said he will have access to a diesel supplier in case half of the fuel is used. They have also backup a lot of food, water and first aid supplies.
The state government of North and South governments say that the private nursing homes can make their own decisions on whether to let fragile patients stay or evacuate them.