Investigation launched into deaths of Florida nursing home patients

39 patients are still in the hospital

SOUTH FLORIDA (WWLP) – Police have launched a criminal investigation into the deaths of eight patients inside a South Florida nursing home.

Eight people died and 119 were hospitalized Wednesday due to sweltering temperatures inside this rehabilitation center.

Police said the nursing home lost power and air conditioning on Sunday during Hurricane Irma, but they say only one room in the facility had fans.

Doctors and nurses from the neighboring Memorial Regional Hospital assisted fire crews in the rescue of the 141 patients inside.

“We implemented our mass casualty protocols, and we were able to get people over here and help evacuate the patients that were in that building,” Judy Frum, Chief Nursing Officer at the Memorial Healthcare System said.

Hospital officials said 39 patients are still in the hospital.