BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) — The Louisiana Department of Health had a meeting to address nursing home preparedness during the peak of hurricane season.
The Louisiana Department of Health informed nursing home owners and committee members across the state of new preparedness laws.
“The first meeting after the legislative session, where we were to see what LDH plans to do with the three bills that we passed for hurricane evacuation,” said Executive Director of Louisiana Nursing Home Association Mark Berger.
The meeting primarily discussed House Bill 933, which was passed in this year’s legislative session. The law requires LDH to visit unlicensed sites in the 22 lower parishes, including East Baton Rouge Parish.
“There’s not much significant change, other than a little better coordination,” said Berger.
Better communication, involving nursing homeowners, nursing home committees, LDH, and the families of the elderly.
Last year, in the aftermath of Hurricane Ida nursing home owner, Bob Dean sent more than 800 of his elderly residents to a warehouse, referred to as the Waterbury Facility. Multiple people died from the conditions they endured.
LDH spokesman Stephen Russo said Thursday’s meeting discussed several important factors on what they will improve on.
“Requirements and the occupancy, levels, we looked to make sure there was adequate, toileting, adequate sinks, and adequate showers,” said Russo.
Plus how to make sure how proper evacuation sites, have proper roofing, and no ways for water to enter the building. LDH said a priority is making sure family members know their loved ones are safe.
These new actions will begin to take place on Sept. 1.
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